The Only Two Black-Owned Auto Dealerships That Have Ever Broken the $1 Billion Dollar Barrier

Bob Johnson and Gregory Jackson, Black owners of auto dealerships
Bob Johnson, founder of RLJ McLarty Landers Automotive Holdings; and Gregory Jackson, founder of Prestige Automotive Group are the only two Black-owned auto dealerships that have ever generated more than $1 billion dollars in annual sales

Being a Black entrepreneur that owns an auto dealership is a big accomplishment in and of itself, but surpassing $1 billion dollars in sales is truly a milestone! In 2005, Michigan-based Prestige Automotive Group, founded by Gregory Jackson, became the first Black auto dealer to surpass the billion-dollar revenue mark. In fact, their revenue that year was $1.67 billion in sales.
How he did it

Jackson told Black Enterprise that he had always focused on customer service and sales performance to enable his dealership to zoom past the competition. He started out with a small dealership in 1993 using $150,000 of his life savings, and eventually expanded to 13 outlets. His hard work over more than 12 years finally paid off!

He told the Michigan Chronicle, “Our service is key. Each employee will be passionate and have a caring spirit, which will allow us to present a great automotive buying experience. In addition to the service advantage, we measure our success by attracting and retaining loyal customers from every part of the community, and executing a business plan that leads to outstanding financial performance.”

But he wasn't the only one to do it

Bob Johnson, best known as the founder of BET and Urban Movie Channel (UMC), has also reached the billion dollar milestone in the auto industry. In 2011, his Texas and Arkansas-based dealership, RLJ McLarty Landers Automotive Holdings, generated revenues of $1.1 billion.

Johnson's company consists of 35 automotive franchises and three Harley-Davidson motorcycle dealerships in eight states. His dealerships are so successful that it was recently ranked 19th on the Automotive News' annual list of “Top 125 Dealerships in the U.S.” and is currently the largest Black-owned automotive franchise in the country.

Falling on hard times

Generating a billion dollars in auto sales every single year is very difficult for any auto dealership to do, and the two discussed in this article are no exception. Sometimes, because of heavy competition and even a national economic downfall, their annual revenues can drop down to as low as $300 or $400 million.

Regardless, hitting the billion dollar mark, even if just for one year, is a very noteworthy accomplishment!

It's also noteworthy to mention that there are more than 50 other Black-owned auto dealerships in the U.S. that have never hit the billion dollar mark, but according to Black Enterprise, they have combined annual revenues of $8.7 billion and 10,156 employees, representing 18 states.

For more details about Prestige Automotive Group, visit

For more details about RLJ McLarty Landers Automotive Holdings, visit
Previous Post Next Post