ECM MB Actros car transporter

ECM (Vehicle Delivery Service) enjoyed a strong 2016 as UK car sales boomed delivering a 12% rise in pre-tax profit, but has warned of tough times ahead.

Vehicle transporter ECM’s latest annual accounts show a 4.4% rise in turnover to £102m (2015: £98m) and a 12% increase in pre-tax profit to £1.3m (2015: £1.1m) in the year to 31 December 2016.

ECM's delivery volumes have risen strongly over the past three years, up a third (34%) while average employee numbers were up 15% at 752 staff in 2016. This includes more than 580 drivers.

ECM’s fleet of transporters and trucks, which makes over 1.3 million deliveries per annum, has also seen significant expansion, growing 27% since 2014 to over 520 vehicles.

The strategic report to the accounts said that 2017 would see "significant capital investments in the core car transporter fleet".

ECM’s customers included Avis Budget Group, BMW, Daimler - Mercedes-Benz, Smart, Ford, Gefco, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar-Land-Rover, Mazda and Toyota & Lexus.

However the business review contained in the annual results, thanked “all employees, customers and suppliers for their continuing support during this very challenging period.”

This year has seen car registrations go into reverse, with the market according to the SMMT 3.9% down year-on-year as of September's registration figures.

ECM said “the key business risks and uncertainties affecting the company are considered to be significant declines in delivery volumes” which are “mitigated in part through the flexible business model employed by the company”.

It added that the directors “are of the opinion that none of the risks that affect the company would have a significant impact upon the trading position of the company in the foreseeable future”.

As this article was published no one at ECM was available to comment.