Coach hire demand boosts Park’s of Hamilton figures

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PROFITS at car dealer and coach operator Park’s of Hamilton revved up by nearly 16 per cent in the past year thanks to a rise in demand for hiring coaches.

Park’s, founded in 1971 by former Hearts football club director Douglas Park, posted a pre-tax profit of £12.2 million for the year to 31 March, up from £10.5m, according to accounts filed at Companies House.

Turnover at its coach hire unit accelerated by 10 per cent to £25.4m, while revenues from its much-larger motor division edged ahead by 1.5 per cent to £321.7m.

Writing in the directors’ report, company secretary Gerard Donnachie said: “Despite difficult trading conditions as a result of the general uncertainty in the economy, the company is in a good financial position at the end of the year.

“As for many businesses of our size, the business environment in which we operate continues to be challenging. The car market in the UK is highly competitive and margins continue to be tight.”

The company – which is one of the largest car dealers in Scotland, with more than 20 showrooms selling marques including BMW, Renault and Volvo – paid a dividend of £4.9m to shareholders Douglas, Graeme and Ross Park, the same figure as last year.

Staff numbers dipped to 1,104 from 1,111 a year earlier.