Dealer Group Notes: Vaughan Automotive Acquires Mike Calvert Toyota

This roundup of dealership news begins with another dealership changing hands.

According to a press release sent Thursday, Vaughan Automotive has purchased Mike Calvert Toyota, one of the fastest growing Toyota dealerships in Houston.

While the pandemic has made it difficult for many businesses, Vaughan Automotive said Mike Calvert Toyota has retained all of its staff and added new employees to better serve its customer base. As a result, the group said Mike Calvert Toyota sold over 6,000 new and used vehicles and highlighted several in-store achievements, including:

—Total new Toyota volume in 2021 of 108.3% year-over-year compared to Gulf State Toyota (GST) region at 101.9%.

—2021 Total Toyota Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles (TCUV) at 112.3% from prior year vs. GST at 105.7%

—Staff of experienced service technicians ranging in age from 22 to 55

—26 local associate scholarship graduates, current high school CTE apprentices

—Total year-over-year sales (2021 vs. 2020) showing an increase of more than 130%

—Customer labor sales (2021 vs. 2020) driving an increase of 161.0%

— Ranked sixth for GST in 2021 (157 dealerships) in fixed operations sales growth percentage increase.

“I am thrilled to continue the legacy of Mike Calvert and build on the foundation he laid,” Vaughan Automotive owner and CEO Shawn Vaughan said in the press release.

“Over the past year, we have experienced exponential growth, not only in sales, but also in our dealership team. It is essential for me to create a world-class customer and employee environment at Mike Calvert Toyota, which our communities in and around Houston deserve,” continued Vaughan.

Now with Vaughan as owner and CEO, Mike Calvert Toyota – which has served the Houston community for more than 44 years – is undergoing renovations to update customer amenities, technician areas and the body shop. while continuing to provide high quality customer service. with top-of-the-range services and equipment.

The 75,000 square foot store features refreshed sales and rental offices, express lubrication, customer waiting area, restrooms, Rent-A-Toyota operations, as well as premier facilities for technical services and a vast field with new and used vehicles. .

Vaughan spent most of his career training and managing Vic Vaughan Toyota of Boerne alongside his father. In early 2022 Shawn Vaughan purchased the inherited family dealership to become the owner and master dealer of Vic Vaughan Toyota of Boerne.

Vaughan said he plans to further integrate Mike Calvert Toyota into the community through nonprofit partnerships and charitable donations, such as the recently announced Noble Nurse project.

“Houston has such a vibrant community and we’re thrilled to give back and truly make it our home,” Vaughan said.

Group 1 dividend & share buyback

Similar as other listed dealership group Penske Automotive announced this weekGroup 1 Automotive also disclosed that its board of directors increased the company’s common stock repurchase authorization from $175 million to $250 million, and also declared an increase in the quarterly cash dividend.

The company also updated its year-to-date repurchase activity of 796,060 common shares at an average price of $179.72 for a total of $143.1 million, representing 4.6% the number of outstanding Group shares 1 as of January 1.

Group 1 said in a press release that it expects any share repurchases to be funded by cash flow from operations, and the repurchased shares will be held in cash.

And the Group 1 board also declared a cash dividend of $0.37 per share for the first quarter.

The company pointed out that the dividend represents an increase of 2.8%, or $0.01 per share, from the fourth quarter. The dividend will be payable on June 15 to shareholders of record on June 1.

“We continue to demonstrate strong cash flow and a healthy balance sheet, which has enabled significant capital deployment in 2022,” said Earl Hesterberg, president and CEO of Group 1, which has 202 dealerships located across the states. United States and United Kingdom.

“We seek to continue our growth through acquisitions while returning capital to our shareholders,” added Hesterberg.

Another Castle executive promoted

Also performing for the second time this week, Castle Automotive Group (CAG) promoted one of its executives.

In a decision effective immediately, Jim McLaughlin was promoted to vice president of fixed operations for CAG, which currently has nine dealerships with 14 franchises in Illinois and northwest Indiana.

CAG pointed out that McLaughlin is a well-known expert in his field with more than 22 years of solid experience in automotive fixed operations with multiple OEMs. The group said its leadership skills range from developing and mentoring employees and streamlining processes to identifying and executing revenue growth potential.

According to a press release, McLaughlin will be crucial as CAG continues to expand its dealership footprint by modernizing service and parts departments.

“Our business has grown at a rapid rate over the past few years, and in order to stay competitive as well as deliver results and a great customer experience, we must first grow our workforce internally,” said the CAG chief executive Joe Castle in the press release.

“It’s no secret that fixed operations in most stores use the least amount of resources and infrastructure, but they have tremendous potential for growth and impacting our store’s profitability,” continued Castle. “From the day Jim started with me, I knew he was young, hungry, and had a vision for service and parts operations that matched my own.

“I am thrilled for this opportunity to support our stores fixed operations teams on a whole new level and for Jim and his team of directors – Hayley Navarro and Dave Vargocko – to continue to grow their careers with CAG,” continued Castle. .

Previously, CAG chose Sean Seltzer to lead its marketing strategy as chief marketing officer and promoted David Ortiz to vice president of variable operations.

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