Sun, 22 Nov 2020
A NEWBURY motor company has beaten off competition from 13,000 other dealerships to win a prestigious national award.
M&T Motor Company, based in Ampere Road, said it was “over the moon and in shock” after being told it had won the Customer Choice award at the 13th annual Auto Trader Retailer Awards.
The Customer Choice award winners were determined following analysis of retailers’ customer reviews on the Auto Trader website.
The award was based on the number of reviews, responses to reviews and overall review score, with the winners scoring top across each metric.
Former Kennet School pupil Martin Prouting started the company in 2011 with a 12-car pitch in Yattendon.
He later moved the business to a 30-car pitch in Newbury, before relocating to the company’s current premises.
M&T now has more than 100 cars on its books, but despite its growth over the years, its dedication to providing good customer service has remained unchanged.
Mr Prouting said: “It’s just amazing.
“I am a little sole trader who was up against all of these glass-fronted big dealerships and it was us who won.
“When I started the company almost 10 years ago, I never thought or dreamt we would get this far or this big, let alone winning awards.
“I get a bit of a shiver when I actually stop and think about it.
“I just wanted to say a massive thank you to all of my team and our customers.”
Mr Prouting, who previously worked at Newbury-based Swift Couriers for 13 years before setting up his own business, added: “We’ve grown and grown over the years and have built up our reputation.
“We like to do things the right way and deliver a great service.
“I’ll always put our customers before my own pocket.”
M&T manager Mike Whitbread said: “We were so shocked, we just couldn’t believe it.
“We were up against all of the big boys – the likes of Land Rover, Mercedes and Porsche – and we won.
“Some of these big dealerships have have teams of sales staff.
“We’ve just got me, Martin, Terry the valeter and Kerry and Connie. That’s it.
“It was very emotional and we had a big cuddle in the office afterwards.
“It just shows that we are obviously doing something right and I’m grateful that it is being recognised.
“We couldn’t have done it without our team and our loyal customers.
“It’s an absolutely massive, massive achievement and we are over the moon.
“To get it as we approach our 10th anniversary is just the icing on the cake and has made it even more special.
“It’s a real feather in our cap.
“We aren’t a family-run business as such because Martin isn’t my brother, but he feels like my brother and I couldn’t be more proud of him and what he’s achieved.
“He started the company in 2010 and I joined soon after and I just want to say a massive thank you to him for taking a chance on me.
“I hope I’ve repaid him.”
Now in its 13th year, the Auto Trader Retailer Awards celebrate the very best in automotive retailing; those brands that are pushing the standard of all aspects of the industry, including digital excellence, and a commitment to exceptional customer service.
In total, 18 award winners were announced across seven categories during the awards ceremony which, as a result of Covid-19, was completely digital for the first time in the award’s history.