JCT600 CEO John Tordoff on well being scares, stepping-back and that Stellantis exit


JCT600 chief govt John Tordoff has instructed AM that the family-run automobile retail group has mapped out a future technique for the primary time in its historical past after a sequence of life-changing occasions.

Talking completely to AM, Tordoff revealed how the prospect discovery of a coronary heart situation that prompted a quadruple bypass in 2020 and the loss of his father Jack in 2021 have been amongst elements that resulted within the drawing of a brand new script.

The adjustments will convey in regards to the Bradford-based AM100 group’s beforehand introduced exit from Stellantis franchises Citroen, Peugeot and Vauxhall and the “amicable exit” from another manufacturers.

However plans to develop with valued current OEM companions are additionally being drawn in a bid to construct a stronger, extra sustainable future.

Tordoff, the subject of an AM dealer profile feature in 2018, mentioned: “There isn’t a strain on the subsequent technology to step-up and tackle the enterprise, there aren’t any ensures that they are going to get the job simply due to their surname – too many companies have failed due to that method. They’ve to indicate the drive and want to need it and the abilities to do it.

“What I’ve mentioned, although, is that when the time comes for me to step apart the enterprise will probably be in the most effective form it presumably may be, with the proper companions in the proper locations.”

OEM relationships

JCT600 lately revealed its plans to shut its Vauxhall, Peugeot and recently-opened Citroen dealership on Sticker Lane, Bradford, with quick impact, whereas its Vauxhall dealership in Castleford and Peugeot in Menston will shift to Kia and Cupra subsequent summer time.

The OEM’s Could 2021 resolution to situation two-year termination notices to its entire European retail network as a part of a roll-out of recent company mannequin contracts clearly rocked a long-standing relationship.

Tordoff mentioned on the similar time it had offered an exit alternative, ending greater than six many years of partnership with Vauxhall and nearly 4 many years with Peugeot.

“We simply mentioned thanks however no thanks,” mentioned Tordoff, who added: “Nothing I’ve heard from them since has made me query our resolution.

“It’s like a wedding, of kinds. In automobile retail you’ve gotten ups and downs but when the connection between the retailer and the producer is powerful, you imagine within the model and so they imagine in you, you’ll each come via it collectively. When that’s not the case, you’re more likely to simply need out.”

JCT600 does have development plans and Tordoff is eager to develop with among the group’s current companions, which embrace Aston Martin, Bentley, Kia, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Rolls-Royce and Volkswagen.

JCT600 CEO John Tordoff and his team at newly-acquired Volkswagen Van Centre West YorkshireUp to now 12 months it has opened the doorways to a new Porsche Centre in York, accomplished the development of a £9 million Ferrari dealership in Leeds and likewise the acquisition of Volkswagen Van Centre West Yorkshire, which Tordoff described as “a superb match”.

However he added: “The best way I take into consideration who we must be partnering with now could be to suppose what my response can be if that model got here to me with an enlargement alternative. If I wouldn’t wish to take it, why am I with that model in any respect?”

In accordance with Tordoff, JCT600 is on monitor for a really robust 2022 monetary efficiency, with turnover forward of 2021 and internet income in-line with or above these achieved in what was a bumper 12 months for the sector.

It’s more likely to show to finish a interval of document turnover efficiency, with Mercedes-Benz’s shift to an agency model in 2023 which means that revenues from dealerships in Chesterfield, Doncaster, Harrogate, Sheffield and York will not seem on its outcomes.

Tordoff mentioned that the normal franchise mannequin had “by no means been in higher form” and mentioned that many retailers may be prompted to “money of their chips” on account of uncertainty surrounding the shift to company mannequin agreements.

However he’s unfazed by the swap and sees the group’s community of round 50 dealerships maintained after a interval of restructure.

Household values

Regardless of the invention of a hereditary coronary heart defect – recognized throughout a medical for a world motor racing licence in 2019 – which led to surgical procedure for a quadruple coronary heart bypass, Tordoff insists he’s “fitter than ever” and has no plans to depart his chief govt put up simply but.

JCT600 graphic promoting the Ben Industry Leader Challenge 2022His health has been ramped-up by preparations for Ben’s expedition up Mount Kilimanjaro subsequent month as a part of its Trade Chief Problem, a feat to be completed alongside JCT600 customer experience officer Andy Bateman in a bid to lift £50,000 for the trigger.

However Tordoff’s surprising well being situation did mix with the impacts of COVID to immediate him to take “half a step again” from the enterprise.

He instructed AM this has helped him declutter his thoughts and see extra of the larger strategic image, prompting discussions in regards to the group’s future make-up and its succession plans.

“I’m 59 and my brother Ian’s 65,” mentioned Tordoff. “We misplaced my dad final 12 months. Now we have seven members of what we name technology 4 working within the enterprise now.

“We’ve reached a degree the place we’re reassessing what we wish out of the enterprise and the place we wish it to go now.

“There was by no means a grasp plan for the enterprise to be as large as it’s. We by no means sat down and created a method to create this big enterprise. We have been merely good at what we did and we took alternatives as they got here alongside. If it was in Aberdeen or London we’d say no, however there was no large grasp plan.

“Ian and me each made the choice that we weren’t going to be like my dad and nonetheless be coming into the enterprise once we have been 84 years previous.

“We wish to create house for technology 4 to do issues their means and we wish to create the foundations for them to have the ability to do exactly that.”


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