Automatic distribution. An unprecedented wave of departures of groups and leaders in 2022

Several large operators, as well as many historic companies, exit the automotive distribution landscape in 2022. Rarely has the sector lost so many contenders in one year. Review the major movements that have occurred over the past twelve months.

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Many investors chose to sell their car dealerships in 2022, usually to larger operators.

Gilles Fraval

The 2022 financial year is not yet over, but the list of operators withdrawing from automotive distribution is already very long. This includes major groups, some of which are members or former members of the top 100, but also historic family businesses with strong regional roots. Concentration has done its job in recent years, but the strategies of manufacturers (at Stellantis in particular), related to changes in the automotive sector, the lack of opportunities for external development or even with uncertain prospects, certainly hastened the departure of some leaders.

As a reminder, the groups GGE, Bacchi-Bouteille, Grenard, Hacquart, Patrick Launay, Tuppin, Coste and Autoreva sold their business in 2021. The argument has compiled the most significant departures that have occurred in the past twelve months.

These groups leave the car distribution

The Alain Guénant et Compagnie group, ranked 61ste area of ​​major distributors in 2020 (€230 million in turnover), sold its Citroën dealerships to the Dubreuil group in January. In April, he sold his BMW business in La Roche-sur-Yon, Sables-d’Olonne (Vendée) and Niort (Deux-Sèvres) to the GCA. The Guénant family maintains a minority stake in these sites.

The German group Cloppenburg, who thought among the top 50 distribution groups in 2012, It has just sold its Jaguar Land Rover dealerships in Nice and Cannes to Mapauto. These were his last establishments in France.

The group founded and directed by Arnaud Duffort sold 1eh December in Neubauer its flagship from Port-Marly (Jaguar Land Rover), which signed its definitive departure from the sector. The operator, which is still ranked 93e place in our top 100 in 2019, has significantly reduced airfoil in 2021 by selling to BPM Group its concessions in Ulis (Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo), Orléans (Maserati, Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo), Chartres (Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo) and Montrouge (APV Volvo).

Didier Berrezai (82e in our last top 100) has started a sale “by apartment” of all its concessions in Breton and Normandy. So the manager sold his Ford and Suzuki sites to the Legrand family, as well as some of his Citroën businesses to the Gemy and Bayi groups. Discussions are underway for the sale of the last Citroën sites in Bayeux (Calvados), Coutances, Saint-Lô and Cherbourg (Manche).

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Fabien Chanoine will sell all his concessions to the Gueudet family at the end of 2022.


“It is with particular emotion that I announce that I am selling my group from December 31, 2022. This decision was not easy, but I am convinced that I am making the best choice for me and my family. » It is with these words that Fabien Chanoine, head of the eponymous group, announced on the LinkedIn network his departure from the automotive sector. The leader, who took over the management of the group in 2016 after the death of his father Philippe, will sell to Gueudet the Renault and Dacia dealerships in Dreux (Eure-et-Loir), Verneuil-sur-Avre (Eure), L ‘Aigle , Mortagne-au-Perche (Orne), as well as the case of Nissan in Alençon (Orne).

Announced at the end of 2021, the takeover of the Rose family concessions (Volkswagen and Audi in Seine-et-Marne) by Yves Jeannin was officially recorded on January 3, 2022.

In September, LS Group took over the Breton concessions belonging to the Pemzec family (Kia in Brest and Quimper and Volvo in Brest, Quimper, Vannes, Lanester and Redon). The Pemzec group represents a turnover of €63 million in 2021 and a quantity of 1,300 new vehicles.

The Grimal family, which has been active in the car trade and repair for over a hundred years, sold its businesses in Albi (Volvo, Fiat, Jeep, Mitsubishi) and Castres (Fiat, Jeep, Mitsubishi) to the group in last summer. Tresol – Chabrier. Five generations have worked in the Albigensian company.

These groups greatly reduced the airfoil

The Saip II entity, led by Axel Granjon, recorded on June 17, 2022 the sale of its concessions in Valenciennes, Maubeuge, Arras and Cambrai, which distribute the brands of the Volkswagen group, to the Valauto group. This operation does not include the takeover of the Fiat area, Abarth de Valenciennes (SDAH), which remains managed by Saip II for now.

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Group concession sale in distribution

Axel Granjon (left), director of Saip II, and Jean-Dominique Roger, director of the Valauto group.


On August 3, 2022, the Competition Authority’s website reported that Bymycar had announced its intention to acquire the Alfa Romeo, Audi, Jeep, Mercedes-Benz, Skoda and Volkswagen (VP and LCV) dealerships from the Lombardot group. The Porsche centers in La Garde and Puget-sur-Argens are not included in the operation. Five months have passed, and the hiring is still not formal. Contacted, Bymycar replied that it had not yet discussed the matter. A historic member of the top 100, the Lombardot group, which did not respond to us this year, was ranked 48e ranking of operators in 2020 (€294.1 million turnover).

In July 2022, the Nation group closed the doors of the Nation garage, its Renault-Dacia dealership in Paris Picpus, as well as the Fontenay-sous-Bois dealership. The Ile-de-France operator therefore left the Renault network, where it was historically a representative in Ile-de-France. The latter continues to display panels of the FCA, Honda and Nissan group brands. Founded in 1937 by Joseph Marani, the group is owned by real estate developer Emerige since 2018.

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Automatic distribution.  An unprecedented wave of departures of groups and leaders in 2022

The Nation group closed the historic Renault-Dacia garage in Paris Picpus in July 2022.

These other companies and managers left the sector

Philippe Delahousse, head of the Bayern Auto Sport group, sold his BMW-Mini dealerships in Calais, Saint-Omer, Boulogne-sur-Mer (Pas-de-Calais) and Dunkirk (North) to the Lempereur group at the beginning of year. In 2020, they represented a volume of over 600 new vehicles and a turnover of almost 60 million euros.

The Dartus family was sold at the end of September 2022 its Mercedes-Benz dealerships belong to the Clim group (VP, VUL and VI) and Smart from Auch (Gers) but also its Toyota business from Auch (Gers), Agen and Villeneuve-sur-Lot (Lot-et-Garonne). Christophe Dartus, the manager, wants to leave the automotive sector to focus on his lifting activity.

Pascal de Bonnières, president of Auto 40-64, has sold its Kia, Nissan and Mitsubishi sites based in Landes and Pyrénées-Atlantiques to Eden Auto at the beginning of 2022. The leader has been president of the Kia dealership group within two years.

Founded almost forty years ago and managed since 2005 by Vincent and Pascal Delcros, the Auvergne Auto company no longer owns the BMW, Mini, Opel, Seat and Skoda concessions located in Aurillac (Cantal). It also operated a site in Saint-Flour dedicated to after-sales (BMW, Mini, Seat, Skoda and Volkswagen) and the sale of used vehicles. These businesses are now managed by the Grim Group.

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Automatic distribution.  An unprecedented wave of departures of groups and leaders in 2022

The Hyundai and Volvo dealerships of the Delhorbe group were taken over by the Hess family.


The Volvo distributor in Reims since 1976 and in Châlons-en-Champagne and Épernay since 1999, the Delhorbe family company will leave the sector in 2022 following the sale to the Hess group of the three companies that distribute the Volvo brands, Hyundai and Isuzu in Reims, Châlons-en-Champagne and Epernay.

In Vosges, Stéphane Brocard and Claude Chopot signed this year the sale of their business representing the Stellantis brands, respectively to the Car Avenue and JMJ Automobiles groups.

Sébastien Richer, director of Dynamism Automobile, should soon sell its BMW-Mini dealerships in Angers and Saumur to the GCA. The latter entered the network in 2008 after eighteen years with the manufacturer.

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