Penske buys major stake in truck dealer group

Amid speculation the Penske Automotive Group is planning to extend its reach in the commercial vehicle sector in Australia, by acquiring a number of truck dealers here, the company has made a major acquisition in the US.

The announcement was made this week Penske increased its stake in the Around the Clock Freightliner Group (ATC) to 91 per cent, taking over control of the operation. ATC is a heavy and medium duty truck dealership group located in Texas, Oklahoma and New Mexico.

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The operation runs out of fourteen locations, including eight full-service dealerships offering Freightliner, Western Star, and Sprinter-branded trucks. ATC is also involved in a substantial used trucks business, as well as service and parts departments, open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

In its statement about the acquisition, Penske said ATC is expected to contribute revenue of up to US$700 million to the company’s coffers.

“ATC represents a strategic opportunity for our company,” said Roger Penske, Penske Automotive Group Chairman. “Like the automotive retail dealership business, the heavy-duty truck dealership industry is highly fragmented and provides an excellent opportunity for our company to build scale through further consolidation.”

It looks likely some of that increased scale is going to come from acquisitions here in Australia, following the recent purchase of the MTU Detroit Diesel business and Penske Commercial Vehicles taking over the operation importing Western Star, MAN and Dennis Eagle into the country.