Holman to acquire Kuni, creating group of 33 dealerships
As first reported by The Banks Report, Holman Automotive announced on Tuesday that it will acquire Kuni Automotive in a deal that executive say creates one of the largest privately owned dealer networks in the country.
Holman added the deal also ensures a long future for a major charitable foundation.
The dealer group highlighted the acquisition, expected to be finalized this summer, will create a bi-coastal network with 33 dealerships and more than $3 billion in overall annual revenue, doubling Holman Automotive’s retail holdings.
Holman currently has dealerships in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Florida. Kuni Automotive, with dealerships in Washington, Oregon, California, Colorado and Kansas, will maintain its brand name and will be known as Kuni Automotive, a Holman Enterprise.
Executives added that the terms of the deal will not be disclosed.
As a result of this deal, the majority shareholder in Kuni Automotive — the Wayne D. Kuni and Joan E. Kuni Foundation — a charitable foundation that has supported cancer research and worked to enhance the lives of developmentally disabled adults since 2005, will be able to fund its work well into the future.
Additionally, the foundation expects to be able to broaden the scope and geography of its charitable outreach.
“Our two companies share a deep culture of charity and community service," said Melinda Holman, chairman of the board of Holman, who will join the board of the Kuni Foundation.
“Knowing that more than half of the proceeds will go to the Kuni Foundation and serve people in need for decades to come is a wonderful byproduct of this transaction,” Holman continued.
The dealer groups said that it was vital to Kuni Automotive chief executive officer Greg Goodwin to find a buyer who not only shares his company's values, but would also create a company that is not just bigger, but better.
“We are creating a company that is greater than the sum of its parts," said Goodwin, who will remain with the company in a leadership position.
“It's easy to get lost in the ‘bigness’ of this transaction, but ‘big’ doesn't serve a purpose if it doesn't improve the company,” Goodwin added.
Holman executive vice president and chief strategy officer William Cariss has been responsible for overseeing the Holman-Kuni transaction from start to finish. Once the transaction is complete, Cariss will be responsible for identifying future investment opportunities across Holman’s business segments.
“As we consider future opportunities, we hope to find companies, like we did with Kuni, that have similar values and work ethics that blend well with the Holman culture,” Cariss said.
Holman CEO Carl Ortell pointed out the expansion comes at a time of consolidation and innovation in the automotive industry.
“Our acquisition of Kuni comes at a time when these two organizations have never been stronger. We are well-positioned to remain a leader in the auto industry as it continues to evolve. What's more, we are well-placed for future growth in all of Holman's business segments,” Ortell said.
“We’re creating a company with a global footprint that will allow our people to explore new career opportunities within the larger organization,” he went on to say.
Holman plans to remain a privately owned company in anticipation it “continues to grow and flourish.”
Melinda Holman added, “Plan A is to remain a family-owned company for generations to come. And there is no Plan B.”