#1 Cochran completes purchase of Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC
It's now official. Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC in Boardman has been sold to #1 Cochran, the largest auto retailer in Western Pennsylvania.
During a news conference with both companies Friday afternoon, Alexa Sweeney Blackann had a hard time holding back her emotions.
"Many people may not realize how difficult a decision this was for my family and me," Sweeney Blackann said while fighting back tears. "It's assumed this is an automotive business but it's really a people business and you can tell that by the people that are here today. I'm excited for the community which I'm confident will continue to feel the support they have come to expect from this dealership."
The dealerships will now be branded as #1 Cochran Chevrolet and #1 Cochran Buick GMC and nearly all of Sweeney's 200 employees will remain.
While bittersweet, Sweeney Blackann says knowing the Cochran family for decades helped make this transition easier.
"It was the right time, the right partner and that was really meaningful, to be able to do it with someone that really understood what we do, had the same values and could build on that, was really important to us," Sweeney Blackann said.
For #1 Cochran, this will be their first dealership in Ohio. Rob Cochran, the President and CEO, calls it a win-win for the company and the Mahoning Valley.
"We have the fundamentals of what they've established here, all coupled into a larger company that can invest in technology, can be focused on forward looking strategies and what customers are looking for and what customers may be looking for in three and five years and certainly that is where our team is focused," Cochran said.
The Sweeney buy-sell marks #1 Cochran's third acquisition in the past 10 months. In October, the company purchased Johnstown-based Thomas Team Honda in Cambria County, PA., and last March acquired 100-year-old Butler County Ford, each from multi-generational family owners.