Carson KIA, the Nation’s highest-volume KIA Dealership, sold to Trophy Automotive Dealer Group
Kerrigan Advisors, the leading sell-side advisory firm to auto dealers in the U.S., represented and advised Car Pros Automotive Group in their recent sale of Carson KIA, the highest volume KIA dealership in the U.S. since 2016. The buyer is the Southern California-based Trophy Automotive Dealer Group (TADG). Opened in 2017, the dealership’s new state-of-the-art facility spans 72,000 square feet, and is a flagship in KIA’s national distribution network. This marks the 5th dealership that TADG has purchased in Southern California in recent years.
“This was a very big decision for our family. While we have no intention of leaving the car business, we felt that selling our large KIA store in Carson made sense, both for our family and for the strategic direction of the Group,” said Matthew Phillips, CEO of Car Pros Automotive Group and son of the founder and chairman, Ken Phillips. In addition to the Carson store, Car Pros Automotive Group comprises six dealerships in Northwest Washington and Southern California. “I’d like to thank Kerrigan Advisors for smoothly guiding us through this process, with such a high level of professionalism – they truly understand everything a seller goes through and offered sensitivity, a keen understanding of the current (and future) automotive landscape and support every step of the way."
Kerrigan Advisors has represented on the sale of 72 dealerships since July 2015, making it the most active sell-side advisor in the auto retail industry.
“Ken and his family are the top KIA retailers in the United States and have been a huge part of that brand’s success on the West Coast – which is also one of the most demanding and cutting-edge automotive markets in the world,” said Ryan Kerrigan, Managing Director of Kerrigan Advisors. “From the start, in handling this transaction, we focused on that innovative spirit. This is a crown jewel for the KIA brand, and we were proud to be able to offer Carson KIA the representation it deserved.”
The Phillips family has retailed more than 100,000 KIAs in the U.S., more than anyone else, ever – an achievement that reflects their generational connection to the brand, and to the West Coast automotive market. “I opened my first dealership in Des Moines, Washington in 1984, based on the ideals of honesty and integrity,” said Founder Ken Phillips. “As I look back, for the past 35 years, we’ve held true to those standards in everything we’ve done. I am proud to say that our recent transaction was handled in the same fashion. Kerrigan Advisors really helped to provide the expertise we needed to transition our Group toward the next phase of Car Pros automotive retail.”
“We were honored to represent the Phillips family on this big transaction,” said Erin Kerrigan, Managing Director of Kerrigan Advisors. “This is a landmark dealership in the KIA network, and we have enjoyed working with the Phillips family to develop their game plan for the next leg of their group’s growth. We congratulate Trophy Automotive Dealer Group on adding Carson KIA to their portfolio of Southern California dealerships.”
Gus Paras and Bert Rasmussen of Scali Rasmussen served as legal counsel to Car Pros Automotive Group. Aaron Jacoby of Arent Fox served as legal counsel to Trophy Automotive Dealer Group.
Kerrigan Advisors monitors conditions in the buy/sell market and publishes an in-depth analysis each quarter in The Blue Sky Report® which includes Kerrigan Advisors’ signature blue sky charts, multiples, and analysis for each franchise in the luxury and non-luxury segments. To download the report, click here. The company also releases monthly The Kerrigan Index™ composed of the seven publicly traded auto retail companies with operations focused on the US market. The Kerrigan Auto Retail Index is designed to track dealership valuation trends, while also providing key insights into factors influencing auto retail. To access The Kerrigan Index™, click here.
Ryan Kerrigan is Managing Director of Kerrigan Advisors and an expert on US auto retail buy-sell transaction work. Prior, Ryan served as Managing Director at Serent Capital, a $250mm private equity fund investing in middle market companies and served as General Manager of the family’s auto dealership. Mr. Kerrigan began his career as a management consultant at McKinsey & Company, where he advised Fortune 500 companies on growth strategies, organizational issues, pricing and business valuation.
Erin Kerrigan is Founder and Managing Director of Kerrigan Advisors, and is a recognized industry expert on dealership valuation, real estate and buy/sells. A sought-after commentator on automotive retailing topics ranging from consumer auto buying trends to auto retail consolidation to private equity in auto retail, she has keynoted numerous automotive conferences and her analysis has appeared in publications such as Automotive News, CNBC.com, and the Wall Street Journal. For a recent video of Erin’s commentary on the market, click here.
About Kerrigan Advisors
Kerrigan Advisors is the leading dealership buy/sell advisory firm focused on providing a high level of client service for dealership sellers nationwide. Led by a team of veteran advisors, Kerrigan Advisors customizes each sale process to maximize the seller’s transaction proceeds. The firm has sold 72 dealerships since 2015, including five of the Top 100 Dealership Groups in the U.S. With the most comprehensive buyer database in the industry, Kerrigan Advisors has the industry context and expertise to match every seller with the right buyer. In addition to Kerrigan Advisors’ sell-side transaction work, the firm also provides a suite of consulting services including accounting preparation for sale, litigation support, open point applications and transactional due diligence.
In addition to the monthly Kerrigan Auto Retail Index, each quarter, Kerrigan Advisors publishes The Blue Sky Report®, a Kerrigan Quarterly, which is the auto industry’s most comprehensive and authoritative quarterly report and analysis of dealership buy/sell activity and franchise values. Kerrigan Advisors’ Managing Director, Erin Kerrigan, is a recognized industry expert on dealership valuation, real estate, and buy/sells, and is a frequent speaker at leading auto retail events and conferences, including NADA, JD Power Automotive Roundtable, AICPA, NADC, and Driving Sales’ President’s Club. She has also been a keynote speaker for events hosted by American Honda Motor Company, Audi of America, US Trust, Ohio Automobile Dealer Association, and SunTrust Bank and has led webinars for NADA and Automotive News. Kerrigan Advisors’ Managing Director Ryan Kerrigan is also a sought-after industry expert. He is featured in a monthly column for Dealer Magazine and has written Op-Eds for Automotive News, among other outlets.