Asbury Automotive Group Announces the Opening of Two Stand-alone Used Vehicle Stores

Apr 23, 2014, 07:10 ET from Asbury Automotive Group, Inc.

DULUTH, Ga., April 23, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Asbury Automotive Group, Inc. (NYSE: ABG), one of the largest automotive retail and service companies in the U.S., today announced that they are in the process of opening two stand-alone used vehicle stores under the 'Q auto' brand name in 2014.

Commenting on the announcement, Asbury's President and Chief Executive Officer, Craig T. Monaghan, stated, "Over the last three years, we have grown used vehicle retail unit sales in excess of 55% and grown used vehicle retail gross profit by close to 35%.  We remain excited about the opportunities we see in the used vehicle market and believe there is an opportunity now for us to take our demonstrated used vehicle retailing talent, technology, and processes and expand into a stand–alone used vehicle retailing model. This year, we plan on opening two free standing used vehicle stores, which we are branding as Q auto."

In connection with the announcement, Asbury provided the following details:

  • We expect our first store to open in Tampa, FL this June with a second store opening this fall in Jacksonville, FL;
  • We believe it will take a store approximately 18 months to achieve run-rate revenues and profitability;
  • We estimate the launch of this initiative may reduce EPS by 8 to 12 cents per share in 2014;
  • We estimate incremental 2014 capital commitments related to this initiative may be up to $25 million; this would be in addition to the $60 million of capex Asbury has previously announced.

About Asbury Automotive Group, Inc. Asbury Automotive Group, Inc. ("Asbury"), headquartered in Duluth, Georgia, a suburb of Atlanta, is one of the largest automobile retailers in the U.S.  Built through a combination of organic growth and a series of strategic acquisitions, Asbury currently operates 80 retail auto stores, encompassing 101 franchises for the sale and servicing of 29 different brands of American, European and Asian automobiles.  Asbury offers customers an extensive range of automotive products and services, including new and used vehicle sales and related financing and insurance, vehicle maintenance and repair services, replacement parts and service contracts.

Forward-Looking Statements  This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  Forward-looking statements are statements other than historical fact, and may include statements relating to goals, plans, market conditions and projections regarding Asbury's financial position, liquidity, results of operations, market position and dealership portfolio, the benefits of its restructuring program and other initiatives and future business strategy.  These statements are based on management's current expectations and beliefs and involve significant risks and uncertainties that may cause results to differ materially from those set forth in the statements.  These risks and uncertainties include, among other things, market factors, Asbury's relationships with, and the financial and operational stability of, vehicle manufacturers and other suppliers, acts of God or other incidents which may adversely impact supply from vehicle manufacturers and/or present retail sales challenges, risks associated with Asbury's indebtedness (including available borrowing capacity, compliance with its financial covenants and ability to refinance or repay such indebtedness, particularly upcoming maturities, on favorable terms), Asbury's relationships with, and the financial stability of, its lenders and lessors, risks related to competition in the automotive retail and service industries, general economic conditions both nationally and locally, governmental regulations, legislation, adverse results in litigation and other proceedings, and Asbury's ability to execute its IT initiatives and other operational strategies, Asbury's ability to leverage gains from its dealership portfolio, Asbury's ability to capitalize on opportunities to repurchase its debt and equity securities or purchase properties that it currently leases, and Asbury's ability to stay within its targeted range for capital expenditures.  There can be no guarantees that Asbury's plans for future operations will be successfully implemented or that they will prove to be commercially successful.  

These and other risk factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in our forward-looking statements are and will be discussed in Asbury's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission from time to time, including its most recent annual report on Form 10-K and any subsequently filed quarterly reports on Form 10-Q.  We undertake no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

SOURCE Asbury Automotive Group, Inc.