Prestige car dealer hit hard
* HR Owen profits drop by over 50% * Sales of Ferraris and Bentleys fall * Used car market has biggest drop...
Profits at luxury car dealer HR Owen have dropped by more than 50%.
The company blames drivers downsizing to smaller cars and buyers finding it difficult to secure credit.
Pre-tax profits for the dealership, which sells models such as Bentleys and Ferraris, dropped 53% from 3 million to 1.4 million in the year to December 31, 2008.
Shares in HR Owen have also lost about 65% of their value during the previous year.
HR Owen's chairman, John MacArthur, said that while new car sales had suffered, demand for used vehicles had also fallen significantly in the second half of the year.
He was, however, confident that the group is well placed to survive the current market slowdown.
'Although operating in challenging times, the group is in a strong position to weather the current economic conditions,' he said.
The company has recently downsized to concentrate on selling luxury cars and has closed its Volvo division.