BOULDER, Colo. — Nearly a third of the 285 dealership owners surveyed by the National Alliance of Auto Dealer Advisors (NAADA) indicated they do not have a succession plan in place. The findings reveal that auto dealers are still struggling with succession planning — the No. 1 inhibitor being timing and the current owner’s willingness to step back.

Faced with unique challenges, dealers are pushing off succession planning by more than five years. While nearly 50% of the dealerships surveyed recognize that succession planning is important, they also admit they haven’t dealt with it yet. For those who have a plan in place, 79% are looking at internal transition.

“Different from other studies you may find in the market, this Succession Planning survey focused on the state of mind of the owners responding, rather than some of the hard metrics on the number of retiring dealership owners,” said NAADA President Steve Hewitt.

The study’s full findings will be released in the coming months as part of a Succession Planning series. The articles will offer solutions to the challenges disclosed in the survey, the association said.

The NAADA is a nationwide network of accounting firms that specialize in working with auto dealers and their ownership teams. Collectively, they represent more than 1,000 dealerships throughout the country from single point stores to multi-state enterprises.

Originally posted on F&I and Showroom