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Gee Automotive buys 5 stores, expands in Idaho

Gee Automotive Cos. has purchased five luxury dealerships in Boise, Idaho, from the Lyle Pearson Auto Group and has added Jaguar-Land Rover and Volvo to its portfolio.

The deal, which closed Wednesday, includes Mercedes-Benz-Sprinter; Porsche; Jaguar-Land Rover; Volvo; and Acura dealerships. Terms weren't disclosed.

"We've been looking to expand in the Boise market and are thrilled at the opportunity to partner with the team at Lyle Pearson," Gee CEO Ryan Gee said in a statement. "Our growth strategy has been to add strong performing dealerships that share our values of customer service, employee engagement and being an active part of the community. The Lyle Pearson dealerships are a perfect fit on all of those counts."

Lyle Pearson began his company in 1969 and his first franchises were Mercedes-Benz and Volvo. In the late 1980s, he added Land Rover and later Acura and Porsche. Pearson died in 2012 and his son-in-law Jim Cross took over the business. In recent years, Cross oversaw construction of new Jaguar-Land Rover and Volvo stores.

"We are so pleased to pass the business onto another family-owned, service-oriented, growing dealership group," Cross said in a statement.

Gee began in 1983 with a Pontiac dealership in Spokane, Wash. It has grown through acquisitions, including the purchase of 13 dealerships in the Portland, Ore., area in 2017 from the Ron Tonkin Family of Dealerships. Gee now has 29 dealerships.

Gee of Liberty Lake, Wash., ranks No. 53 on Automotive News' list of the top 150 dealership groups in the U.S., retailing 18,090 new vehicles in 2019.

Kerrigan Advisors, a sell-side firm in Irvine, Calif., represented Lyle Pearson and Cross in the transaction.

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