MEDFORD, Ore. — Lithia Motors Inc. has acquired Carbone Auto Group, a New York- and Vermont-based dealer group that generates an estimated $600 million in annual revenue, according to a company announcement.
The purchase adds 13 stores to Lithia's portfolio, including two stores each of Honda, Subaru and Ford stores. The acquisition also adds one store each of Toyota, Chevrolet, GMC-Buick-Cadillac, Chrylser-Jeep-Dodge-Ram, Nissan, Hyundai, and BMW locations.
"We're excited to welcome Enessa and Alex Carbone and the entire Carbone team to our family and look forward to sharing best practices to inspire continuous improvement. For over 85 years, Carbone has served their local communities in upstate New York. Their reputation and teams they have developed position them well for future growth,” said Bryan DeBoer, president and CEO of Lithia Motors. “This adds to our growing pool of entrepreneurial and dynamic store leaders that accelerates our ability to find strong and stable businesses at a pace and return that is typically reserved for green-fielding."
Enessa Carbone, CEO of the auto group, will continue to oversee the group under Lithia’s ownership, the company stated. Alex Carbone will also continue to oversee the group’s variable operations.
“It was very important to us that we find the right buyer for the Carbone family, particularly one that would continue the Carbone commitment to their community, employees and customers,” said Erin Kerrigan, founder and managing director of Kerrigan Advisors, the advisory firm that represented and advised the Carbone Auto Group in its sale to Lithia Motors. “Lithia is that buyer. We are very happy that Enessa and Alex Carbone will continue to lead the Carbone Auto Group and that their family’s legacy in the auto retail industry will live on.”
The acquisition of the Carbone Auto Group comes off the heels of a successful second quarter for Lithia Motors. During the period, the dealer group posted year-over-year improvements in F&I PVR, gross profit for both its new and used segment, gross profit per unit for new and used, and average selling prices for both new and used cars.
The dealer group also realized year-over-year growth in its used-retail sale numbers during a quarter.
The Carbone Auto Group, which was founded in 1920 by Alex and Enessa’s grandfather Joe Carbone, has grown to become the 94th largest auto group in the country, the company stated. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.