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500 jobs lost as Carcraft goes into administration.

USED.CAR supermarket Carcraft has collapsed into administration with the loss of 500 jobs.

Administrators from Grant Thornton said trading has ceased at the Rochdale-based business, which operated 10 forecourts across the UK including in Newport.

The firm generated an annual turnover of PS120m, selling 12,000 cars a year at an average price of PS9,000 per vehicle.

But Grant Thornton said the business was "heavily loss-making" and had posted losses of around PS8m for a number of years.

The administrators, Daniel Smith and Joe McLean, said it was no longer viable to keep Carcraft going after attempts to find a buyer for the business failed.

Last year the firm was sold in a management buyout led by chief executive Robin Bridge and backed by buyout firm Apollo Ventures.

The business was sold by brothers Darren and Noel McKee, who also founded Webuyanycar in 2006 before selling it last year.

Grant Thornton automotive advisory partner Tarun Mistry said: "The business model has failed to evolve with the changes in the used vehicle remarketing sector and regulatory environment.

"Overall, this sector is still vibrant and represents a significant opportunity for the appropriate operating model to benefit from the growing and changing used vehicle market."

Administrator Mr Smith added: "With great regret a conclusion was reached that it is no longer viable to keep Carcraft in operation. In order to prevent further losses it has been agreed with management and creditors to cease operations with immediate effect."

Mr Smith said the business would retain a skeleton staff to help with selling off the assets.

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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:May 1, 2015
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