Cox Automotive, operator of the Kelley Blue Book marketplace and several other brands, announced it will bring its Canadian operations under its U.S. reporting structure.

Maria Soklis

Maria Soklis, president for Cox Automotive Canada and Brazil, has chosen to leave the company at the end of October, closing a six-year tenure. The company said she’ll help with the business transition, already in progress, and will not be replaced.

Cox Automotive runs many of the same brands in Canada as it does in the U.S., including Kelley Blue Book (KBB.ca in Canada); Dealer.com, Dealertrack, the Manheim wholesale auction business and several others. It doesn’t operate Autotrader in Canada as the AutoTrader.ca classified site is owned by the Trader Corporation, a subsidiary of Thoma Bravo.

The consolidation of operations is part of a decision to simplify the firm’s structure for local and global customers, Cox Automotive stated, adding that the firm will continue to invest in the Canadian market.  

Cox Automotive made a simultaneous announcement that it had signed up the BMW Group Canada to use Manheim Canada’s services to source, inspect and collect inventory. BMW Group Canada runs 51 BMW stores, 21 BMW motorcycle retailers, and 31 MINI retailers across the country.

Martin Forbes, president for Cox Automotive International, wrote: “The new strategy will ensure the business becomes more agile in supporting both current and future customers and help leverage synergies and efficiencies between Canada and the United States including sharing common platforms, products and solutions.

“Cox Automotive Canada has long been closely aligned with the US, especially due to its geographic proximity. We have common customers, and it just makes business sense to serve them as one company,” Forbes continued. “We need to simplify our structure to make it even easier for our customers to do business with us and for us to help them grow. It will be an important part of our North American strategy.”

Forbes added: “I would like to thank Maria for everything she has achieved in Canada during her six years with the business. Her leadership has led Cox Automotive Canada to being recognized as the leading automotive service organization in the country.”

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