For over 35 years, Ian MacIver, a name that has become synonymous with Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep and Ram in York Region, worked hard to cultivate long-standing relationships with his staff and clients.
These are the relationships Michael Croxon, President of New Roads Automotive, is looking to maintain and expand as he welcomes MacIver Dodge to the New Roads Family. New Roads, the growing automotive company based in Newmarket, acquired the long-standing MacIver Dodge on March 1. Bringing the Chrysler brand under the New Roads umbrella is a win-win all around, says Mr. Croxon. “Chrysler has been on a tremendous roll as of late, really since they came out of their bankruptcy proceedings as GM did in the States,” he says. “I believe they are now up to 71 or 72 months of consecutive year-over-year growth, which is an impressive statistic. “The reason they have been on a role is on the strength of their product offering and the strength of the deals that are surrounding that product offering. They have been very aggressive. Their products are obviously widespread, but their strength really is in the Ram, the Ram pickup truck, their various Jeep products and the Chrysler minivan.” Recently approached by an intermediary on behalf of MacIver to explore the possibility of a sale, these were all factors Croxon took into consideration when exploring the possibilities. “I looked at that, I looked at Newmarket and felt these were great products for the community and if we can put the New Roads name on these products, then we think it will be a win for those who are interested in these products in this community, and it is a win for us.” After a week or so at MacIver, Croxon says they are in the process of examining the processes they have at the dealership, the physical limitations of the existing dealership, which is situated right across Yonge Street from Upper Canada Mall, and getting to know all the employees. “The one thing I can say is Ian nurtured a tremendous group of people who work here and have worked here, in a lot of cases, for a very long time,” says Croxon. “It is very much a family kind of atmosphere. Everybody loved Ian and Ian quite aggressively loved everybody who worked for him. That is something we would like to maintain, notwithstanding the tweaks we will inevitably make to bring the place to New Roads standard.” This is a standard that is being set across York Region. Just last year, New Roads acquired Dave Wood Mazda. Their new show room for their Subaru location was opened last summer in Richmond Hill, and now they are eyeing expanding their existing service operations at their Cadillac showroom also on Yonge Street, just north of MacIver. “Of course, what we will do with MacIver in short order is exciting for both the people who work here and, I hope, for the customers here as well,” says Croxon. “There is a lot going on from a construction standpoint at New Roads for the balance of 2016, and then in 2017 we will start construction on our new Subaru store in Newmarket. “We always hope to have an opportunity to look at anything automotive, so regardless of brand and regardless of location, if it is in the northern 905 we at least want to take a look. Some brands are more desirable than others from a consumer perspective, and that usually drives our decision-making process as to whether we will pursue [expansion opportunities] or not. “The reality is if we can increase the New Roads presence in Newmarket and the northern 905, we think it is strategically a good thing for our organization. Unfortunately, the reality today is that we can have a customer who is ecstatic with our product and ecstatic with the way we have serviced them for the duration of their ownership of the product, but we can still lose them when they go to trade in their vehicle because we do not offer the product that the want at that particular time. “By extending our product line, it gives us the opportunity talk to that customer at that time, whether it be lease renewal or the time they choose to turn in their vehicle and have more offerings to talk to them about. Ian McIver was the Chrysler dealer in Town for 35+ years and he developed a loyal following and a great business. Obviously, he consciously chose to sell his business for his reasons and we were fortunate he approached us. We just look forward to continuing to service both those customers and any new customers that are looking for Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram product in the future.” written by Brock Weir