After 30 years in business, Dean and Chris Pellegrino, the husband-and-wife owners of California Tire Co., have sold their tire store and automotive service location to another husband-wife team — Joe and Holly Shaw.
The 3,500 square-foot business has eight service bays with six six lifts, and it is located in an auto service mall that also includes a foreign car repair specialist and a detailing shop. The store is located in Newbury Park, Calif. in Ventura County.
The Pellegrinos founded California Tire Co. in 1989, and they say the business has thrived with loyal customers due to the honest, personalized and efficient customer service they've provided. Plus, the business offers a specialized service — restoration work on classic muscle cars.
Leveraging over 40 years of experience as both an aftermarket business owner and technology executive to become an automotive aftermarket-specific business broker, Art Blumenthal, LLC managed the marketing and ultimate sale of the tire business.
The Shaws have long wanted to own their own business. Joe Shaw has almost 40 years of automotive experience as a service writer, and Holly has 30+ years of administrative experience. Their search led them to Art Blumenthal LLC, the same company the Pellegrinos has turned to for help in selling their business.
Joe Shaw said, “My wife Holly and I had been looking at various aftermarket businesses for quite some time — on and off for the past 10 or 15 years — and were, quite frankly, disillusioned by the P & L statements we saw where the owners were just draining the business dry and didn’t seem to understand the effect that was having on the marketability of a shop.
"Finally, California Tire came along at the right time in the right place with all the attributes we had hoped for. The business has all the right criteria…it’s well-established, successful, financially sound, and as an added bonus, is located right in my own hometown. A lot of good people work for the business in a friendly neighborhood environment and I am highly motivated to keep that going into the future as well as leaving my own mark on the business, bringing innovation to the table which may even raise the bar. I’ve already invested in some new equipment that I think will improve things even more. All of the employees are staying under my new ownership.
"Art Blumenthal was extremely helpful throughout the purchase process, being instrumental in required communications and knowledgeable in all the aspects of the various steps. Now that I am the owner, I’m very glad I took the step.”
Seller Dean Pellegrino said, “Art Blumenthal knows his stuff when it comes to automotive service businesses and did a very professional job of marketing California Tire and introducing potential buyers so that I could decide who would be the best fit for taking the business my wife and I built into the future. I was hoping for someone as a buyer with deep automotive experience with a personality conducive to getting along well with both customers and employees. After almost 30 years, I couldn’t just walk away without leaving the business in good hands. Joe Shaw and I get along very well and I am confident he was the best choice.
"I credit Art with that success and learned during the process that I needed an experienced professional broker such as him because there is so much to know to get it right. My advice to other sellers would be to not try to go it alone.”
Pellegrino isn't leaving the industry altogether. He has invented and patented an adaptor system for alignment called Tru Align, which turns difficult wheel alignments into a simple, intuitive, scratch-free process. The product is currently sold on Amazon, and Pellegrino will be displaying and demonstrating the product at the 2019 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show in booth No. 49237 in the South Hall.
For more information on Art Blumenthal, visit www.art-blumenthal.com.