AutoNation Launches New Store Branding; Reports Hike in Used Sales


In addition to announcing a new branding strategy for the franchises within its domestic and import business segments, AutoNation reported in its 2012 full-year and fourth-quarter results Thursday that the retailer increased used retail sales by nearly 6 percent last year.

AutoNation moved 180,973 used retail units in 2012, good for a 5.8-percent increase from the 171,094 used sales it recorded in 2011.

Used revenue for the year came in at $3.71 billion, compared to $3.51 billion a year ago.  This was part of overall 2012 revenue for AutoNation that reached $15.67 billion, and record adjusted earnings per share from continuing operations of $2.54.

As for the new branding strategy, the company said all 210 franchises that fall under its domestic and import business segments will be marketed under the AutoNation brand. AutoNation has three business segments: domestic, import and premium luxury.

The transition, which begins Friday in South Florida, involves 23 brands.  AutoNation aims to have it complete throughout all markets by end of the second quarter.

“The launch of the AutoNation brand unifies us under one flag, AutoNation, rather than as local market brands.  We have worked to provide a peerless customer experience across the enterprise.  AutoNation is a brand that stands for leadership, transparency, and peerless customer care,” said Mike Jackson, chairman and chief executive officer.

“This is an incredibly important moment for us as a company and has the full support of our manufacturer partners who approved the change to the AutoNation brand,” he continued. “Since my arrival, we have laid a foundation for this transition by investing more than $3.7 billion in facilities, developing best practices in our stores and Shared Service Center and completing strategic acquisitions across the country while focusing on the customer as our No. 1 priority.”

Editor's Note: Stay tuned to Monday's Auto Remarketing Today and SubPrime News Update e-newsletters for a more in-depth look at AutoNation's 2012 performance, including analysis on used-car and F&I results.

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