DCH Auto Group announced that the New Jersey based auto retailer has entered into a definitive agreement with Lithia Motors, Inc. to combine their companies. The agreement calls for Lithia to acquire 100 percent of DCH Auto Group. DCH currently owns and operates 27 dealerships in New Jersey, New York, and Southern California. Lithia Motors, Inc. is the eighth largest automotive retailer in the United States, and sells 28 brands of new vehicles and all brands of used vehicles at 101 stores in 12 states.
This combination develops a metro market strategy for west coast based Lithia, as the DCH stores are located in the greater metropolitan areas of New York and Los Angeles. The integration of the DCH team allows the combined organization to pursue two growth opportunities: the exclusive franchise, small- to medium-size market strategy that is Lithia's hallmark; as well as the large metropolitan market strategy the DCH management team has honed since the 1970s. Together, the combined organization will be able to leverage best-in-class execution around customer satisfaction, sales volume and cost control.
George Liang, President of DCH Auto Group, stated that under the terms of the agreement, "DCH dealerships will maintain the DCH name and continue to leverage the high quality DCH brand, including its commitment to 'The DCH Way' and promoting teen safe driving. Lithia and DCH will maintain their current management teams, and going forward will work in tandem to lead and support their respective markets."
The DCH stores will continue to be led by the current management team, with George Liang, DCH's president, reporting directly to Bryan DeBoer, Lithia's president and CEO. After the transaction is completed, it is expected that Shau-wai Lam, DCH's founder, will join the Lithia Board of Directors.
"This is the coming together of two groups who share similar core values based on customer satisfaction, continuous improvement, teamwork and integrity," stated Shau-wai Lam, chairman of DCH Auto Group. "This is the beginning of a new era that will build upon the foundation that was laid more than sixty years ago, and continue to grow the DCH brand for many years to come."