LaFontaine Automotive Group in Highland Township, the largest family-owned dealer group in Michigan, has acquired Keller Ford in Grand Rapids. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Keller Ford, which covers 52,217 square feet and is located at 3385 Alpine Ave. NW in Grand Rapids, becomes the fourth Ford dealership in the LaFontaine Automotive Group.
“Grand Rapids is our first dealership in west Michigan and the Grand Rapids market has been a key area of focus as we’ve looked to expand our operations and deliver our Family Deal advantage,” says Ryan LaFontaine, CEO of the LaFontaine Automotive Group. “We see a tremendous opportunity for continued growth in the greater Grand Rapids area and look forward to welcoming new guests into the LaFontaine family and delivering a best-in-class experience.”
LaFontaine Automotive Group has added 17 retail locations in the past five years, four in 2021, all in Michigan.
“As we continue to expand, we don’t do it for it for today, we do it for the future — to be able to better serve our customers and to provide career growth for our employees,” LaFontaine says.
Founded in 1980 by Michael Sr. and Maureen LaFontaine, the group now includes 52 retail franchises, seven collision centers, and 30 Michigan retail locations. It employs more than 2,100 individuals. The group sold 54,266 vehicles in 2021 and is ranked as the 33rd largest dealer group based in the U.S. by Automotive News.
“Grand Rapids is very community-focused city and we have already started partners across the community to partner with and create initiatives that will connect families and strengthen communities,” says Kelley LaFontaine, vice president of the LaFontaine Automotive Group. “As a family-owned and operated business, we know our continued success and growth is more than just selling and servicing cars, it’s about giving back in our local communities and never losing focus that our employees are our greatest asset.”
Scott Tarwacki, a general manager with the LaFontaine Automotive Group, will oversee the new Grand Rapids location, in addition to his responsibilities over other LaFontaine locations.
Luke Field, sales manager of LaFontaine Chevrolet of Dexter has been promoted to general sales manager to oversee the day-to-day leadership of the new Grand Rapids dealership.
“I’ve been part of the LaFontaine family for over 10 years and I’ve poured my heart and passion into helping grow the LaFontaine family of brands, delight our guests and grow my career,” Field says. “I look forward to bringing the customer and family-focused culture that has defined LaFontaine to Grand Rapids and am extremely optimistic for the future growth of this dealership and new market.”
Following the closing, the dealership will be renamed LaFontaine Ford of Grand Rapids. Ryan LaFontaine will be the dealer operator.