AutoNation shuts used-car stores

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In its latest change in strategy, AutoNation USA Inc., Fort Lauderdale, Fla., shuttered 23 of its 37 used-car megastores yesterday in 10 states. A spokesman said the stores were losing money. Roughly 1,800 employees were let go. Eight other stores are already integrated with new-car dealerships; the other six will go that route. AutoNation is still the nation's largest car dealership chain with 409 franchised dealers. The spokesman said the marketer will study how to brand its store experience before it searches for a new agency to succeed Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos. The Boston shop resigned the account in September. AutoNation has said that on Jan. 1 it will spin off its rental car business, which includes the Alamo and National brands.

Copyright December 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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