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Sears debuts Sears Auto Center franchise program


Hoffman Estates, Ill. Sears Holdings Corp. announced the launch of a new strategic initiative for the Sears Automotive business: the Independent Sears Auto Center franchise program. The new program offers automobile dealers the opportunity to operate licensed Sears Auto Centers, bringing the Sears brand, buying power, distribution network, systems and corporate support to automotive aftermarket businesses.

Coleman Auto Group of East Windsor, N.J., is the first dealership to take advantage of this opportunity and will open a Sears Auto Center in March. Coleman Auto Group is utilizing a space formerly dedicated to its Chrysler dealership.

With over 3,000 automobile dealerships that have lost their franchise, Sears designed the new franchise program 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. 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.

“The Sears Auto franchise is a win for customers and a win for dealers," said Bill Jackson, senior VP of Sears Holdings Corp. and president of Sears Authorized Independent Auto Centers, LLC. "For customers, Sears Auto Centers will be more convenient than ever, with more locations providing our full product and service offerings. 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."

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