[Nameplate] Rain ~ 48°F  
High: 56°F ~ Low: 44°F
Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Local GM dealership survives cuts

Saturday, May 16, 2009

For a few hours Friday morning, Rob York felt the butterflies in his stomach.

The dealer/owner of York Chevrolet/Pontiac/Buick in Brazil and York Chevy/Pontiac/Buick/GMC in Greencastle told The Brazil Times Friday his dealerships survived a round of cuts by General Motors Corp.

The corporation announced Friday it was terminating 1,100 of its national dealer franchises late next year.

Dealers received letters via FedEx Friday notifying them they were on the list. The letters stated dealers were judged on sales, customer service scores, location, condition of facilities and other criteria. The letter also left open the possibility that decisions could be reversed.

The GM decision came one day after officials with Chrysler announced it was also cutting dealerships.

Still, anticipation of the mail Friday caused the butterflies in York's stomach to stir.

"From 8:30-11:30 a.m., I felt like I was going to get sick," York said. "I had two (employees) approach me today asking if we were going to receive a letter today. I didn't think I'd have that sort of day.

"It's a sad day when a company has to do such drastic cuts. My thoughts and prayers go out to those (who received notification). We were lucky."

York's Brazil dealership is located at 2456 West United States 40.

Bob Burkle has owned Clay County's remaining GM dealership, Bob Burkle Chevrolet, 611 Main St., Clay City, since 1999. On Friday, he said he headed in to the day like any other day.

"It's just another day," Burkle said.

Burkle said the criteria he received was "very broad."

"They left it wide open," Burkle said.

Burkle said he had talked to some of his friends in the dealership business who had received letters and others who had not. However, he would not go on record regarding the status of his dealership.

By cutting 1,100 dealerships, GM is cutting 40 percent of its retail network.

Officials with GM said Friday too many dealers is a "problem," adding they expected more cuts in the future. However, officials said they expect 90 percent of the remaining dealerships to stay with the company.

General Motors Corp. doesn't own the dealerships. However, officials with the company said with too many dealers, they are competing against each other, effectively giving the customer too much leverage in pricing of vehicles, which can hurt the company's future sales.

Officials said the moves Friday targeted "underperforming" dealers with small sales.

The cuts are part of a larger plan by GM to drop 2,600 of its more than 6,000 dealerships in an effort to restructure.

The company expects to lose sales due to the cuts, but over time, fewer dealers will mean higher profits per vehicle.

Current contracts for GM dealers run through October 2010.

York told The Times Friday his company's motto, "We're not No. 1. You are," means more now than it ever has.

"That's very important now," York said. "We need to prove them right."

Readers are encouraged to comment on this article at www.thebraziltimes.com.

Note: The nature of the Internet makes it impractical for our staff to review every comment. If you feel that a comment is offensive, please Login or Create an account first, and then you will be able to flag a comment as objectionable. Please also note that those who post comments on bannergraphic.com may do so using a screen name, which may or may not reflect a website user's actual name. Readers should be careful not to assign comments to real people who may have names similar to screen names. Refrain from obscenity in your comments, and to keep discussions civil, don't say anything in a way your grandmother would be ashamed to read.

When you read this article, please note the statements "giving the customer too much leverage in pricing of vehicles" and "fewer dealers will mean higher profits per vehicle". The ones who will pay for the restructuring of GM and Chrysler will be the customers. You will not see the unions or the upper management take any cuts. I have always bought GM cars, but am seriously thinking about Toyota or Honda, etc.

-- Posted by not gullible on Sat, May 16, 2009, at 9:00 AM

I agree completely. I have also always bought GM vehicles. But i a seriously thinking of buying from Toyota.

It is sad when they go to the government to ask for a bailout and don't want to get rid of their $200,000 jet they flew in on.

They always think of getting rid of the employees, the people that actually MAKE them money!! They should cut from the top down, not the bottom up. But they won't they're spoiled.

It is just sad...I feel for all the employees that have lost their jobs.. I am right there with you.

-- Posted by luv2bmom2001 on Sat, May 16, 2009, at 2:55 PM

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: