Fort Myers, Fla., is a key market for an upstart used car company with designs on becoming a national retailer and redefining the market, according to the entrepreneur and reality television star driving it.
The Fort Myers News Press reported that AutoMatch USA opened this past week at 8900 Colonial Center Drive, the third location of a company launched last year by Marcus Lemonis, CEO of Camping World Inc. and star of CNBC’s “The Profit.”
“The Camping World location in Fort Myers is typically one of our best performing stores and that is a market that just makes sense to me,” Lemonis said this week from Allentown, Pa., where he was filming an episode of “The Profit” related to Major League Baseball. “(Fort Myers) has a very stable and steady market with a great mix of buyers.”
AutoMatch also grew out of “The Profit.” In the first episode of season two, which aired in February, Lemonis stepped in to help Athans Motors in Morton Grove, Ill. Lemonis made an initial $3.5 million investment, took control of the operation and rebranded it AutoMatch USA. A location in Jacksonville opened this past spring and stores in Ocala, Salt Lake City, Bakersfield, Calif., are in the works.
“This is a national opportunity,” Lemonis said. “I saw a real void in the market for CarMax to have a competitor.”
CarMax, which opened a Fort Myers dealership in 2012, operates 140 stores in 70 markets. The Fort Myers store is about three miles west of the new AutoMatch store on Colonial.
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