Seven-store addition further solidifies group’s commitment to expansion.
SALT LAKE CITY – Larry H. Miller Dealerships has announced the acquisition of seven dealerships in the state of Arizona; three stores in Avondale and four in Tucson. Avondale stores include: Avondale Chrysler, Jeep; Avondale Dodge, Ram; and Avondale Fiat. Tucson stores include Tucson Dodge, Ram; Tucson Chrysler, Jeep; Tucson Fiat and Tucson Volkswagen. The acquisition is the largest in the company’s history, further affirming the group’s dedication to the Arizona market and growth overall.
“Larry H. Miller Dealerships is committed to growth, being a good community partner, and providing meaningful employment to members of the communities where we conduct business,” said Dean Fitzpatrick, president.
These additional stores will increase the company’s overall volume by approximately 15 percent and take it into a new market with Tucson. Larry H. Miller Dealerships will remain 10th on the Automotive News list of top 125 dealership groups in the country, now operating 19 different automotive brands at 55 locations in seven Western states.
The company’s development and use of an analytical approach for expansion has resulted in unprecedented growth in the number of Larry H. Miller dealerships in the past four years, adding 23 stores for a 48 percent increase. (Five stores were sold in this same timeframe.)
Negotiations for the Arizona dealerships, purchased from Doug Moreland and John Grant, began seven months ago. Steve Starks, executive vice president for the Larry H. Miller Management Corporation represented the Miller’s interest in the agreement and has been leading the company’s quest for new acquisitions for the past four years.
“Not only is this the largest dealership acquisition in our company’s history, we believe it is among the largest acquisitions in the industry over the past several years,” Starks said.
Larry H. Miller Dealerships opened its first Valley location, Larry H. Miller Toyota Peoria, in 1980. The automotive group added a Dodge dealership to the site in 1995 and Hyundai in 2000. Larry H. Miller Volkswagen was opened in 2004 in Avondale, and its Nissan dealership was opened in Scottsdale in 2006, and then moved to Mesa in 2008. As well, the group opened a new Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram dealership in Surprise in late 2012.
Arizona is the second largest state behind Utah for number of dealerships owned by the Miller Group. On September 29, 2007, the group sold its one-millionth car in company history to a customer at Larry H. Miller Dodge Peoria.
Larry H. Miller Dealerships will retain the existing employees of the seven newly-acquired dealerships bringing the total number of Arizona-based personnel to more than 1,000 and overall automotive employees to more than 3,700.
“An important part of the purchase value of these dealerships is the employees,” said Fitzpatrick. “We are impressed with the corporate culture at these stores and the high-caliber, experienced people who work there. We feel that they will be a great fit for our organization.”
John Grant added, “It is always a difficult decision to make when selling our dealerships to a new group. It is important to both me and Doug that we select a company that values its customers and employees. Our decision was made easier knowing how Larry H. Miller Dealerships conducts business and the benefits they offer their workers.”
Outside of the latest acquisition, Larry H. Miller Dealerships currently operates six stores in the Phoenix market; three of which are part of a $30 million West Valley reconstruction project. The Larry H. Miller Toyota, Hyundai and Dodge Ram stores on Bell Road in Peoria are anticipated for completion in summer 2013.
Larry H. Miller Dealerships has a strong legacy of giving back to communities where they do business. Through its charitable foundation, Larry H. Miller Charities, approximately $500,000 has been donated to nearly 150 qualified nonprofit organizations throughout the greater Phoenix area. Beneficiaries include the Phoenix Children’s Hospital, Ronald McDonald House, The Maricopa Pediatric Foundation, Special Olympics Arizona, the Peoria School District Foundation and Sharing Down Syndrome Arizona. With the move in to the Tucson market, the company will be expanding its philanthropic efforts.
For more information about Larry H. Miller Dealerships, please visit www.lhmauto.com.