Group 1 Automotive

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Group 1 Automotive, Inc.
Group 1 Automotive
Traded asNYSEGPI
S&P 600 Component
CIK: 0001031203
IndustryCar dealership
FounderBob Howard, Sterling McCall, Charles Smith, Kevin Whalen
Number of locations
Area served
United States, United Kingdom, Brazil
Key people
Earl J. Hesterberg (CEO), John C. Rickel (CFO), Daryl A. Kenningham (President US), Peter C. Delongchamps (SVP), Frank Grese Jr. (SVP), Darryl M. Burman (SVP)
BrandsAcura, Audi, BMW, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram Trucks, Ford, GMC, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar, Land Rover, KIA, Lexus, Lincoln, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, MINI, Nissan, SEAT, Skoda, Subaru, Toyota, Vauxhall, Volkswagen, Volvo
ServicesNew Car Sales, Used Car Sales, Light Truck Sales, Automotive Service and Repair, Automotive Financing, Automotive Collision Repair, Automotive Parts Sales.
Number of employees
14,200 (2017)
SubsidiariesBohn Holdings, Chandlers Garage Holdings, GPI Ltd, Group 1 Automotive UK Limited, Group 1 Funding, Ira Automotive Group, Mike Smith Autoplaza, Mike Smith Autoplex, Miller Automotive Group, Miller Imports, Bob Howard Automotive East, Bob Howard Motors, Rockwall Automotive, Lubbock Motors, Maxwell Ford, Mike Smith Imports, Amarillo Motors-F
Footnotes / references,

Group 1 Automotive, Inc. (NYSEGPI) is an international Fortune 500 automotive retailer[1] with automotive dealerships and collision centers in the United States, United Kingdom and Brazil. Group 1 sells new and used cars and light trucks, arranges financial services, provides maintenance and repair services, and sells vehicle parts. As of 2019, the company employs over 15,000 people globally.

The company is led by former Ford Motor Company executives, CEO Earl J. Hesterberg[2] and CFO John C. Rickel[3]. The company executives are SVP Peter C. DeLongchamps[4], SVP Darryl M. Burman[5], SVP Frank Grese Jr.[6], and President of US Operations Daryl A. Kenningham[7]


Group 1 was founded as a public corporation in 1997[8] with B. B. Hollingsworth[9] as Chairman and CEO. The founding dealership owners were Bob Howard of Oklahoma City, Sterling McCall[10] and Kevin Whalen of Houston, and Charles Smith of Beaumont.[11]

Subsequent acquisitions in the USA include the Gene Messer Automotive Group, Maxwell Auto Group, Ira Motor Group, Bohn Auto Group, Pat Peck Auto Group and Miller Automotive Group. 2018 Acquisitions include two dealerships in El Paso[12] and on 1st March 2018,

In March 2018 Group 1 completed their acquisition of 5 Mercedes-Benz and 3 smart dealerships from Robinsons Motor Group. These are based in Bury St Edmunds, Cambridge, Kings Lynn, Norwich and Peterborough.[13]

Group 1 acquired UK dealers from 2010 to 2017, including: Barons Group, Chandlers Group, Essex Audi Group, Elms Group, Think Ford, Spire Automotive and the Beadles Group.[14][15][16][17][18][19][20]

Group 1 purchased Brazilian automotive firm UAB Motors Participacoes S.A in 2013[21], renaming the entity as Group 1 Automotive Brasil in 2015. Professional race car driver André Ribeiro and his family of dealerships[22] were notable parts of this acquisition.

As of 2013, Group 1 became the third largest automotive retailer in the United States[23] and as of 2018 the company owns 163 dealerships in 15 states across the USA, 18 in Brazil and 60 in the UK.[24] Group 1 also operates 31 collision centers in the USA, Brazil and the UK.

In response to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, Group 1 issued a $500 bonus to non-management dealership personnel[25]. CEO Earl Hesterberg noted, "This was an unusual opportunity to support the people who do the hard work without doing undue financial damage to the company."


In the USA, Group 1 Automotive has dealerships in Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Texas. Their corporate headquarters is in the Memorial City district of Houston, Texas.[26][27]

Products and Services[edit]

In response to used vehicle retailing trends[28], the Val-U-Line® brand was created in Q1 2018 to retail older vehicles with benefits like a 3-day/300 mile return policy and CarFax vehicle history reports. Initial investment impacted forecasts[29] but future earnings were positive[30], contributing to a 13.9% increase in used vehicle sales for 2018.[31]

In June 2019 the company created AcceleRide®, a digital retailing platform allowing customers to purchase a new or used vehicle without the need to visit their dealerships[32][33]. The platform also provides vehicle financing, trade-in appraisals and offsite delivery options[34].


During a monthly visit to make lunches, Group 1 Employees pose with a Nissan delivery van donated by the company to support Kids' Meals delivery efforts in 2015.

With individual dealerships engage in local philanthropic efforts often independent from the corporate office, Group 1 supports Houston-area causes focusing on community outreach and grade school education. Employees regularly make brown bag lunches to support Kids' Meals and donated cargo vans for their meals on wheels deliveries.

The company partnered with SEARCH Homeless Services and Junior Achievement of South East Texas for events[35], classroom mentoring and the JA Company Program in Spring Branch ISD. Starting in November 2017, Group 1 partnered with the Houston Independent School District to reward their Teacher of the Month recipients with a new vehicle to drive[36][37][38] for the month.

The Group 1 Foundation[edit]

Group 1 CEO Earl Hesterberg (Left) delivers check to support employee affected by Hurricane Harvey
Group 1 CEO Earl Hesterberg (Left) delivers check to support employee affected by Hurricane Harvey

The Group 1 Foundation[39] was initially created to support employees impacted by Hurricane Katrina, closely followed by Hurricane Rita. This tax-exempt charity gives all proceeds to help fellow employees in times of hardship. Examples include supporting survivors of fatal car accidents and a fire at an employee's home.

Subsequent natural disasters like the 2013 Moore Tornado, Super Storm Sandy, Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Michael also marked the need for the Group 1 Foundation to assist their employees.


  1. ^ "Group 1 Automotive". Fortune. Retrieved 2018-11-25.
  2. ^ "Earl Hesterberg". Forbes. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  3. ^ "Stocks". Retrieved 2018-01-09.
  4. ^ "Peter Delongchamps, Group 1 Automotive Inc: Profile & Biography". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved 2018-01-19.
  5. ^ "Darryl Burman, Group 1 Automotive Inc: Profile & Biography". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved 2018-01-19.
  6. ^ "Frank Grese, Group 1 Automotive Inc: Profile & Biography". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved 2018-01-19.
  7. ^ "Daryl Kenningham, Group 1 Automotive Inc: Profile & Biography". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved 2018-01-19.
  8. ^ "Group 1 Automotive Inc". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  9. ^ "B. Ben Hollingsworth". Jones Graduate School of Business at Rice University. 2016-03-03. Retrieved 2018-01-09.
  10. ^ "McCall, major Houston auto dealer, dies at 78". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved 2018-01-09.
  11. ^ "Group 1 Automotive 1997 Annual Report" (PDF). 1997. Retrieved 1997. Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  12. ^ "Group 1 Automotive Acquires a Couple of Dealerships in Texas". 2018-01-30. Retrieved 2018-01-30.
  13. ^ "Group 1 acquires Robinson's Mercedes-Benz dealerships, confirms Darren Guiver as UK boss". AM-online.
  14. ^ "Elms BMW and MINI dealership in Bedford sold to American company". Bedford Today. 1 December 2014. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  15. ^ "Group 1 announces acquisition of Spire Automotive". Retrieved 2016-07-12.
  16. ^ "Group 1 Automotive expands JLR and gains VW through major acquisition".
  17. ^ "Group 1 Automotive acquires Barons dealerships". Retrieved 2018-01-26.
  18. ^ "Group 1 Acquires Ford Dealerships From Inchape, Autos". 2013-04-01. Retrieved 2018-01-26.
  19. ^ "Think Ford create 30 new jobs". Basingstoke Gazette. Retrieved 2018-01-26.
  20. ^ "Group 1 confirms Essex Audi acquisition". Retrieved 2018-01-26.
  21. ^ "Group 1 Automotive rolls into Brazil with UAB Motors buy". Reuters. 2013-01-25. Retrieved 2018-01-02.
  22. ^ "André Ribeiro Honda Website". André Ribeiro Honda Website.
  23. ^ "Group 1 snaps up 3 more dealerships in the UK". Automotive News. 1 December 2014. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  24. ^ "Investor Relations". Group 1 Automotive. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  25. ^ "Group 1 Automotive to pay employee bonuses amid tax cut benefits". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved 2018-01-19.
  26. ^ "map_mcity_lg.gif Archived 2011-07-27 at the Wayback Machine." Memorial City. Retrieved on December 8, 2009.
  27. ^ "Contact Us Archived 2010-05-10 at the Wayback Machine." Group 1 Automotive. Retrieved on December 8, 2009.
  28. ^ Roberts, Adrienne. "Used-Car Sales Boom as New Cars Get Too Pricey for Many". Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  29. ^ Charniga, Jackie. "Group 1's launch of older used-car brand to eat into Q1 earnings". Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  30. ^ Takahashi, Paul. "Group 1 Automotive: Used vehicle sales drive record profits in Q2". Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  31. ^ Takahashi, Paul. "Group 1 Auto sold more used cars than new cars last quarter for the first time in company history". Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  32. ^ Szatkowski, Danielle. "Group 1 Automotive debuts online car-buying platform". Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  33. ^ Takahashi, Paul. "Group 1 Auto expands online car buying platform". Retrieved 6 June 2019.
  34. ^ Palermo, Nick. "New Car Buyers Benefit from Home Delivery".
  35. ^ Martinez, Jonathan. "Conroe HS senior surprised with new car at 2017 Junior..." Retrieved 2018-01-19.
  36. ^ "HISD Teacher of the Month for December 2017 – HISD-TV". Retrieved 2018-01-26.
  37. ^ Aragon, Rose-Ann. "5 things to know about Kazmere Dean, HISD's Teacher of the Month". Retrieved 2018-01-26.
  38. ^ morning, tom koch, eyewitness news, anchor, morning news, eyewitness news this (2017-11-07). "HISD announces first 'Teacher of the Month'". ABC13 Houston. Retrieved 2018-01-26.
  39. ^ "Group 1 Foundation Inc - GuideStar Profile". Retrieved 2018-01-18.

External links[edit]