Group 1

Group 1 Automotive Inc. has announced CEO Earl Hesterberg will retire at the end of this year. According to a statement made on Wednesday, Hesterberg will be succeeded by Daryl Kenningham, the group’s current president of U.S. operations. Kenningham will be named Group 1’s president and COO effective immediately and will take the CEO title starting January 1st.   

In a statement, Hesterberg said, “Now is the perfect time to transition to a new generation of leadership at our company.” He also called Kenningham’s performance throughout his career “exemplary,” and said, “He has driven our U.S. business to record levels.”

Hesterberg has been with Group 1 since 2005, after working for both Ford Motor Co. And Nissan Motor Co. Kenningham has been with Group 1 since 2011, and was initially regional vice president, before working his way through the ranks.

“I thank Earl for his outstanding leadership and the board for their confidence, guidance, and support,” Kenningham said in the company’s statement. “We have an outstanding team at Group 1, and I am energized to work alongside them to chart our path forward for the benefit of our employees, customers, communities, and stakeholders during this exciting and dynamic time in our industry.”

Group 1 Automotive was the fourth largest U.S. auto dealership group in 2021. The company has over 204 automotive dealerships, 273 franchises, and 47 collision centers in the U.S. and the United Kingdom.

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