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Georgia company to buy Larry H. Miller Dealerships, valued at $3.2B

The Larry H. Miller Chevrolet dealership in Murray is pictured on Wednesday, Sept. 29 2021.
The Larry H. Miller Chevrolet dealership in Murray is pictured on Wednesday, Sept. 29 2021. Georgia-based company Asbury has announced it plans to buy Larry H. Miller Dealerships and Total Auto Care.
Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

Georgia-based company Asbury has announced its plans to buy Larry H. Miller Dealerships and Total Auto Care.

"Larry H. Miller Dealerships is one of the most respected automotive dealer groups in the United States with a strong culture and stewardship mentality," David Hult, Asbury president and CEO, said in a statement Tuesday.

"This acquisition is a unique opportunity to rapidly expand Asbury's presence into these desirable, high-growth Western markets with strong accretion from day one, with this impressive group and its rich history."

He described the company as a "well-run operation with long-tenured employees and a senior leadership team equaling over 5,300 passionate team members, all of whom have had a part in building and carrying forward the legacy that Larry H. and Gail Miller founded over 42 years ago.

"We are thrilled to grow our presence in these states that we believe have appealing economic and demographic growth opportunities while broadening our geographic reach. Our now national footprint, complemented by our digital purchasing capabilities in Clicklane, creates a truly expansive omnichannel platform of dealerships," Hult said.

Dean Fitzpatrick, president of Larry H. Miller Dealerships, described Asbury as "like-minded in terms of our values and stewardship. Their vision to be the most guest-centric company in the industry aligns with our guiding principle to be the best place in town to work and the best place in town to do business."

The purchase of both companies in the Larry H. Miller Group of Companies is valued at $3.2 billion, with about $740 million in real estate.

Asbury expects to receive about $5.7 billion in annualized revenue from the acquisition.

"Since our family's purchase of a single Utah dealership in 1979, we have been honored to cultivate a strong, values-based culture and customer-first business model within the automotive industry for more than four decades," Gail Miller, owner of Larry H. Miller Group of Companies, said in a statement.

"We feel a great sense of stewardship to our incredible associates and their families, to our loyal customers and partners, and to the communities where we operate. As always, we believe that being in business is a means to doing good, and this transaction will elevate our ability to continue to enrich lives through our philanthropic efforts as well as reinvest in new ventures," she said.

Steve Starks, Larry H. Miller Group of Companies CEO, said the sale "provides additional opportunities for the LHM Group to further diversify and grow our portfolio of businesses and investments."

Larry H. Miller Dealerships includes locations in Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, Idaho, California, Washington and Colorado. The acquisition includes 54 new vehicle dealerships, seven used vehicle dealerships and 11 collision repair centers.

The sale comes the year after the Larry H. Miller Group of Companies sold majority ownership of the Utah Jazz to Qualtrics co-founder and CEO Ryan Smith.

At that time, Gail Miller said the decision was made “after much soul searching, lengthy discussions, and extensive evaluations of our long-term goals” and that the family decided to pass the team’s stewardship to the Smiths.

Larry and Gail Miller bought 50% of the Jazz in May 1985 for $8 million, then bought the remaining 50% the following year for $14 million. The Miller family retained a stake in the franchise in the 2020 sale.