Sears to site franchised car dealer service centers near body shops

Jan. 1, 2020
A newly launched Independent Sears Auto Center franchise program geared toward auto dealerships is to include sites located near body shops and used car outlets.

A newly launched Independent Sears Auto Center franchise program geared toward auto dealerships is to include sites located near body shops and used car outlets.

This proximity will make it “even more convenient for customers to service their existing vehicle or shop for a new vehicle,” says Bill Jackson, president of Sears Authorized Independent Auto Centers LLC, and senior vice president at Sears Holdings Corp. “We are creating an opportunity to leverage Sears Automotive’s scale, business processes and brands so that dealers can build their businesses in service, parts and used vehicles.”

With more than 3,000 dealerships having lost their automaker franchises, Sears has designed its offering “to help those dealers leverage their facilities by building a set of businesses around parts and services, over-the-counter merchandise and previously owned vehicle sales,” Jackson says.

“The new Sears Auto Center franchise locations will provide the same products and services for automobiles, light trucks and motorcycles that are currently available at the nearly 850 company-owned Sears Auto Centers,” he says.

“For customers, Sears Auto Centers will be more convenient than ever, with more locations providing our full product and service offerings,” he says. “This is also a great opportunity for dealers who are currently selling used cars to gain a brand that’s nationally recognized for quality and dependability, a resource for buying high-quality auto parts and supplies, and access to a proven business model that has been tailored to their needs.”

The Coleman Auto Group of East Windsor, N.J., is the first to sign on with the program, utilizing space formerly dedicated to its Chrysler dealership. The new facility is slated to open in March.

“We’re thrilled to join the Sears Auto Center network. No other opportunity combined so many features that we needed as we sought to stabilize our business and position it for future growth,” says Coleman’s Bill Kendall.

In addition to tires and wheels, franchisees will be selling DieHard batteries and related equipment plus car care products, truck boxes, fluids, floor mats and Craftsman tools.

Maintenance and repair services for consumers and fleets are to include oil changes, alignments, shocks, brakes, coolant/antifreeze, air conditioning, transmissions and fuel system cleaning.

Sears credit cards will be accepted along with other aspects of the company’s operational processes being applied to the new centers.

For more information, visit www.searsholdings.com.

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