Chip Perry Retires as CEO of TrueCar

June 3, 2019 — After three and half years at the helm of TrueCar, Chip Perry is stepping down as CEO and president, the company announced today.

TrueCar has not named a replacement for Perry, who will continue to consult with the company.

Perry, one of the pioneers in the automotive Internet space, founded AutoTrader in 1997 while at Cox Enterprises. Under his management and an aggressive acquisition strategy, AutoTrader became the leading automotive classifieds listings company generating more than a billion dollars a year in revenue by the time he left the firm in 2013.

He joined TrueCar in December 2015, replacing company founder Scott Painter as CEO. Perry immediately began growing sales while strengthening dealer relationships that had frayed under Painter.

TrueCar has had its challenges the last several months. A change to partner USAA’s website in 2017 negatively impacted traffic and revenue last year resulting in several investor-driven lawsuits that may be consolidated into multi-district litigation status.

Meanwhile, a dealer lawsuit from 2015 for violating the Lanham Act, a federal false-advertising statute prohibiting businesses from deceptive advertising may reach trial later this year after the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York denied TrueCar’s motion for summary judgement in April.

In its most recent earnings call, management lowered its guidance for the year calling for $361 million to $374 million versus the original $374 million consensus.

The stock price dropped from a high of $14.55 last September to a low of $5.61 earlier this year. It’s rebounded to more than $6.50 as of last week but has dropped more than $.50 in early trading following today’s announcement.

TrueCar named former TripAdvisor executive Noel Watson as its new chief financial officer last week.

Firm Tied to Tampa Bay Buccaneers Owner Buying Dealerships in California

May 3, 2019 — British dealer group Pendragon PLC (LON: PDG) announced yesterday it is selling two California Jaguar Land Rover dealerships as part of its plan to exit the U.S. market. Pendragon is selling its Jaguar Land Rover dealership in Newport Beach to U.S. Auto Trust for $40.3 million (£31 million). U.S. Auto Trust… Continue Reading

Thoma Bravo to Acquire 2nd Automotive Technology Company

Yesterday’s announcement that PE firm Thoma Bravo is acquiring Autodata Solutions from Internet Brands could be Act Two in what may be an ambitious play in automotive. The pending transaction also portends an M&A market that is heating up after a slow first quarter that saw only 11 deals completed, down from 23 over the…

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Cars.com Sales Process Ongoing, Extends Board Nomination Deadline

March 25, 2019 — Although sources confirmed to us two weeks ago an acquisition of Cars.com was close, we’re still waiting. But signs are a deal should be announced in the next several days. According to a press release this morning, the process is ongoing and involves “multiple parties.” The biggest indication, though, is that… Continue Reading

Tesla Again Revamps Its Retail Strategy

March 11, 2019 — Tesla’s strategy of closing its retail network apparently is a work in progress. After shutting down 10% of its retail locations the last couple of weeks, Tesla announced on its blog last night that it has stopped the process and will evaluate another 20% of its sales locations in coming months.… Continue Reading

Cars.com Sale Likely Close, Here’s a Rundown of Possible Buyers

Cars.com Sale Likely Close, Here’s a Rundown of Possible Buyers

March 10, 2019 — An announcement regarding who Cars.com’s new owner will be could be made as early as this week. The company is an attractive play for numerous players — both from a strategic and an investment perspective. Cars announced in January the board had voted at the end of September to retain J.P.…

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Prime Motor Group Acquires Northeast Dealer Group

Prime Motor Group Acquires Northeast Dealer Group

February 20, 2019 — The Prime Automotive Group added six dealerships last week when it acquired the Marubeni America Corporation’s Auto Gallery in Norwood, MA. The fast-growing Prime, backed by GPB Capital, now has 68 dealerships with revenues approaching $3.5 billion. The transaction is the third large dealership buy-sell of the year and continues the… Continue Reading

Don’t Like GM’s Plant Closures? Blame the Threat of Activist Investors

Don’t Like GM’s Plant Closures? Blame the Threat of Activist Investors

February 6, 2019 — This week, General Motors began the difficult task of laying off more than 4,000 salaried employees as part of a massive restructuring this year that includes the idling of five North American plants, eliminating vehicles and an overall workforce reduction of 14,700 employees. The moves are designed to save the automaker… Continue Reading

Flurry of M&A Deals in Auto Retail Tech Kicks Off 2019

Flurry of M&A Deals in Auto Retail Tech Kicks Off 2019

January 21, 2019 — A flurry of several mergers and acquisitions last week among auto retail vendors started 2019 off with a bang. Through the first two weeks of the year, six deals have been announced. The fast start follows a record-breaking 2018 in which 77 deals were completed. Additionally, Cars.com announced last week its board retained…

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