Asbury sales exec to depart amid HQ move

UPDATED: 10/20/08 5:00 pm EDT Asbury Automotive Group Inc. will lose its top sales and marketing executive, Allen Levenson, as the dealership group moves its headquarters from New York to suburban Atlanta.

Levenson, Asbury's vice president of sales and marketing for eight years, said he wants to stay in New York because he has school-age children.

Levenson has held marketing posts in several industries. He came to Asbury from Gazelle.com, a consumer e-commerce company he founded. Levenson also has held senior marketing posts with the Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. supermarket chain, Petroleum Heat & Power and United Rentals.

Levenson has an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business and a bachelor of arts degree in international relations from Tufts University.

Asbury announced the headquarters move on July 30 in its last quarterly financial report. The move, which also includes closing an office in Stamford, Conn., is expected to save 20 percent of Asbury’s corporate personnel expenses. The move also will get the headquarters closer to dealership operations in the southeast.

The move is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2009. Some of the staff has already moved to Atlanta.

Asbury ranks No. 6 on the Automotive News list of the top 125 dealership groups in the United States with retail sales of 101,871 new vehicles in 2007.

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