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JAPAN-based automotive company IDOM Automotive Group has signed off on Australia, with a new management team this week taking over its operations following a buyout of about $200 million.

The management buyout, which is yet to announce its brand name, puts control in predominantly Australian hands, including management, dealer principals and minority investors.

Financial interest has come from members of the dealer group and from investors headed by Melbourne-based property business Goh Capital, along with investors from Standard Universal Group and SOC Capital.

IDOM now is not involved in the 30 outlets in WA and Victoria that operate under names including Andrews & Wallis (Victoria) and the businesses in WA previously badged DVG.

The company will operate as a partnership with a board of three management representatives, a representative of Goh Capital and an independent chair. The existing management team remains unchanged.

In a statement released by the company to GoAutoNews Premium, it said there would be “no significant changes to the company’s operating model” and it would announce a new company name and “further employee ownership opportunities” over the coming months.

It said that property investors were involved in the board because it saw a lot of synergy with their speciality in property and for future property acquisitions.

The new business is planning greenfields projects with additional new and used-car outlets in WA and Victoria.

The company also said that the Melbourne-based automotive technology business IDOM Innovations, run by former IDOM automotive group CEO of Australian operations, Takayoshi Udagawa, was not involved with the new business.

In a statement issued in April, IDOM said the management buyout would “allow the company to build on its many achievements since entering the Australian market in 2016 through the acquisition of the DVG Automotive Group, the subsequent acquisitions of AWMG Group, Berwick Mitsubishi and plans for continued growth.”

The move was triggered by IDOM, which wants to return focus to its Japanese market where it is the country’s biggest retailer of new and used vehicles, under the Gulliver and IDOM names.

IDOM has posted strong financial results with the 2022 Japanese financial year ending with a huge (626.94 per cent) increase in growth to a revenue of Y459.53 billion ($A4.98b), according to Tokyo stock market data.

In Australia, the group has an annual turnover of about $2 billion through its new and used dealerships.

IDOM spent $121.6 million in 2016 for a 67 per cent share in a successful WA car retail group, DVG, owned and operated by the seven Divirgilio brothers.

In 2018, IDOM took management control of the DVG business from the Divirgilios and embarked on an expansion program, first buying the Andrews & Wallis Motor Group in Melbourne for $70 million. It then bought Melbourne’s Berwick Mitsubishi.

Andrews & Wallis, centred at Essendon Fields, has seven franchises at four sites.

IDOM has 20 new and used outlets in nine locations in WA. These include used-car sites CarCo – in a former Bunnings warehouse in Midland – and CarPlace, in Bibra Lake.

By Neil Dowling

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