Vanguard Auto buys two dealerships
Vanguard Automotive Group of Dallas added two Texas dealerships, one in June and one in September, to nearly double its store count.
With the acquisitions of domestic and import stores, Vanguard Auto now has five new-car dealerships, all in Texas.
The first acquisition, which closed June 28, was the former Parkway Buick-GMC dealership in Sherman, north of Dallas, said Jeremy Wiggains, Vanguard Auto COO, in a phone interview.
The dealership was renamed Vanguard Buick-GMC of Sherman. The seller was Gilchrist Automotive Group of Hudson Oaks, Texas.
Ben Hicks, CEO of buy-sell firm Hicks Management & Consulting Group Inc. in Arlington, Texas, told Automotive News that he represented Gilchrist Automotive in the transaction but worked closely with both parties. The new dealer principal is Vanguard owner Christopher Late, Hicks said.
Both Vanguard and Gilchrist have been acquiring stores.
Wiggains said Vanguard is looking to add dealerships, “within a geographic location that we feel we can manage.”
In December, Vanguard bought a Ford dealership in Hughes Springs, Texas, and in February, Gilchrist bought General Motors and Stellantis dealerships in Gatesville, Texas.
Gilchrist ranks No. 112 on the top dealerships group list, retailing 8,766 new vehicles in 2021.
And on Sept. 15, Vanguard Auto purchased the former Charles Maund Volkswagen in Austin. That store was renamed Vanguard Volkswagen of North Austin, Wiggains said. The seller was Doug Maund, Wiggains said.
In March, Doug Maund and a partner sold Charles Maund Toyota in Austin to Group 1 Automotive Inc.
Wiggains said his group sees opportunity in Austin and with the Volkswagen brand.
“We love Austin. We think Austin and VW go together really well, with the EV direction VW is going, especially with the ID4,” he said. “The demographics in Austin tend to be friendly toward EVs in general.”
Bob Loquercio Auto buys Hyundai, Buick-GMC stores in Indiana
Bob Loquercio, CEO of Bob Loquercio Auto Group in Streamwood, Ill., bought Goshen Hyundai and Goshen Buick-GMC in Indiana from Dzung Nguyen. Loquercio renamed the stores Hyundai of Goshen and Buick-GMC of Goshen. The transaction closed Aug. 4.
Loquercio said he has confidence in the Hyundai and Genesis brands.
“Our next plan is to build a new Hyundai facility in Goshen, on the existing property that we’ve purchased,” Loquercio told Automotive News. “We will also supply GM with a new building. We have tremendous confidence in GMC, with their state-of-the-art pickup lineup, especially the GMC Hummer electric vehicle.”
Until he’s ready to build the new GM facility, Loquercio said he’ll retrofit the existing store with a larger service area. Goshen is in northern Indiana.
The staff at both stores remains, he noted, with the exception of one retiree.
“We’re very much in favor of always keeping people from the community to work with us,” he said.
In early 2021, Loquercio said he bought a Hyundai-Kia store in Michigan City, Ind., renting the building from the seller, whom he did not identify. Loquercio said he built a new Kia facility nearby, which he said opened in June. And he plans to build a new Hyundai dealership on the same road, with an opening planned next summer, he said.
Including the two Goshen stores, Loquercio owns 11 franchised stores in Illinois and Indiana, plus a used-car store. He said he’s also building a standalone store for Genesis in Bartlett, Ill.
Bob Loquercio Auto Group ranks No. 93 on the top dealership groups list, retailing 10,853 new vehicles in 2021.
And Loquercio wants to grow. He said his group is looking to buy several dealerships in the Midwest.
“Our group is in expansion mode,” Loquercio said.