Shares of Asbury Automotive Group Inc. ABG rose 3.2% in premarket trading Friday, after the auto retailer announced a deal to buy the Jim Koons auto dealership group for about $1.2 billion. Asbury said the Mid-Atlantic region dealership was the ninth-largest private dealership group in the U.S., with more than $3 billion in revenue in 2022. The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2023 or early in the first quarter of 2024. Asbury expects to fund the deal with its existing liquidity, credit facility and cash on hand. “This acquisition is transformative for our company, enabling Asbury to further expand into one of the country’s top economies in one of its fastest growing regions, with some of the U.S.’ best performing dealerships,” said Asbury Chief Executive David Hult. Asbury’s stock has slipped 5.1% over the past three months through Thursday, while the S&P 500 SPX has gained 3.7%.
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