2014 ALL STAR | DEALER - PUBLICLY HELD
CEO, Lithia Motors Inc.
Bryan DeBoer, the 48-year-old CEO of Lithia Motors, shook the dealership buy-sell world this summer by announcing a deal to buy DCH Auto Group.
It was a mammoth deal that few if any big dealership groups would be able to do given the limitations of manufacturers' framework agreements.
But Lithia was free of framework agreement constrictions, and DeBoer is bold. Since becoming CEO in May 2012, he has made 44 acquisitions. But the DCH deal truly transformed his company.
Lithia's 102 stores were mostly west of the Mississippi River in small, exclusive markets. DeBoer desperately wanted to go east into bigger markets. Buying DCH, with its 27 stores in major markets in New Jersey and New York, as well as in Southern California, made all of that possible in a single swoop.