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Pendragon finds ‘replacement purchaser’ for California Chevrolet dealership

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Pendragon has completed the £16.5 million sale of its Chevrolet dealership in Puente Hills, California, to JBR Automotive six months after agreeing the sale to another car retail group.

The AM100’s former number one retail group by turnover had announced the sale of the General Motors (GM) franchise to Scott Biehl, the operator of a privately-owned dealership group, as part of its disposal of its US Motor Group operation, back in August 2019.

But today (February 11) it announced that the sale had now been completed for a sum of £16.5 million to JBR Automotive.

Last year’s statement, issues via the London Stock Exchange, had suggested that Pendragon had expected the dealership’s sale to Biehl to be worth an eventual £17.2m.

Today’s statement stated that Pendragon was “pleased to announce” the sale of its Chevrolet motor vehicle dealership in Puente Hills, California.

It added: “The transaction duly completed on 10 February 2020 with the purchaser, JBR Automotive Inc., replacing the purchaser previously announced (in accordance with the mechanism outlined in our 16 August 2019 announcement), and following the fulfilment of all closing conditions with total proceeds for the Company valued at £16.5m. 

“In all other respects, there has been no significant change affecting any matter contained in the earlier announcement.”

Pendragon’s statement added: “The transaction is in line with the Company’s stated strategy of disposing of its US Motor Group and work on the remaining disposals continues.”

On April 2 last year Pendragon announced the successful disposal of the trade and assets of its Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) businesses in Mission Viejo and Newport Beach, California, as part of a bid to retrieve £100m from its operations across the Atlantic.

Pendragon’s website still states that its Hornburg USA division represents the premium brands of Land Rover and Jaguar, as well as Chevrolet, at nine franchise points in Southern California.

Last month Pendragon claimed that its performance “improved significantly” during the second half of 2019, as it carried out the closure of 22 of its nationwide Car Store used car dealership sites.

The group recently announced the closure of several of its Evans Halshaw Vauxhall dealership locations as part of the PSA Group-owned brand’s plan to shrink its UK retail network.

However, there has been investment in several new facilities, including a new Porsche Centre in Stockport, another Porsche Centre planned for Nottingham, and last week the group officially opened a new £3 million Evans Halshaw FordStore car dealership in Chester.

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