AM understands that the split was amicable. White was looking for an opportunity to build on his links with Mazda, which he has represented for 23 years.
The group’s management had been looking into broadening its revenue streams, including a specialist sports car centre and grey import business.
However, White has left three other Mazda outlets remaining with TW White and Sons.
To minimise the effect on its existing customers, all of Mazda Guildford’s original staff have been retained.
Former group marketing manager Jane Saunders has been recruited as business development manager.
General sales director Mike Green has joined the company from Harwoods Audi.
The management structure for the remaining TW White and Sons Mazda and Hyundai sites will remain almost unchanged.
White’s brother Neil will continue as managing director, while their sister Kirsti remains financial director. Their father, founder Thomas W White, will continue as chairman.
Saunders said: “It was a big group with divergent interests, and Ian wanted to purely focus on Mazda, both new and used. The group was diversifying into other revenue streams. “Ian had built up a good relationship with Mazda and decided it was time to go it alone when the opportunity arose.”
The buyout was funded by NatWest. Guildford Mazda expects to sell 600 new and used Mazdas from the site, split one to one, and already has plans for expansion.
Saunders claimed open points are being considered for a second site, likely to be a Mazda dealership, which it hopes to open shortly.
“We’ve got an open mind as to what the company would like to do, but opening another site in the near future would not be outrageous,” said Saunders.