Mercedes-Benz dealer Bell Truck and Van is poised to embark on a major programme of investment in new and improved facilities, following its acquisition by a leading environmental, renewable energy and recycling company.
The manufacturer’s long-serving representative in the North-East has been bought by Leo Group, which also has extensive interests in the meat industry and runs operations in the UK, Ireland, Europe and South Africa.
Although this is Leo Group’s first experience of owning and managing a commercial vehicle dealership, the Halifax-based company brings a customer’s perspective to its latest venture through its operation of a fleet of more than 100 Mercedes-Benz trucks, the majority of them tractor units.
A top priority will be delivery of a long-running plan to develop a van sales and service centre on the Dealer’s established site in Stockton-on-Tees, where staff have been working from temporary facilities. Completion of this scheme will relieve pressure on Bell’s workshop in nearby Billingham, which can then be used solely for trucks. Bell is also actively considering a handful of potential locations in and around Washington, where it intends to open a new, purpose-built truck centre as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, new managing director Ben Sowersby (pictured), who also becomes a co-owner of Bell Truck and Van, can look back on a 17-year track record of award-winning achievement with the Mercedes-Benz brand. In his previous role, he was managing director of the reigning Dealer of the Year for both Mercedes-Benz Trucks and Mercedes-Benz Vans.