Performance Brokerage Services, North America’s highest volume dealership brokerage firm, is pleased to announce the sale of Worthington Ford in Long Beach, California from Nick Worthington and Dave Karalis to Bob Nouri and Pete Shaver of Nouri/Shaver Automotive Group.
Cal Worthington, Founder of Worthington Ford, was born in 1920 in the now-defunct town of Bly, Oklahoma. Cal grew up living amidst the Dust Bowl of the 1930’s during the Great Depression, which played a fundamental role in shaping his hard work ethic and his savvy, opportunistic ability to build what would become an empire.
Worthington enlisted as an army pilot as a young man and was awarded medals for his service in active combat. After WWII ended, Cal moved to Corpus Christi, Texas where he got his start in business. He bought and sold a gas station, and then, entered the automotive industry selling used cars. In 1949, Cal moved to Huntington Park, California and established his first dealership, Hudson Motor Cars.
Cal acquired Worthington Ford in 1963 and rose to fame in Southern California with his attention-grabbing television commercials. Cal was best known for appearing with exotic animals including a tiger, a chimpanzee on roller skates, and once rode in on a hippopotamus. His outlandish animal guests would be introduced as Cal’s “dog, Spot”- a playful jab at the ads of a local competitor that used to appear in commercials with his pet German Shepherd. He also employed catchy jingles that inspired countless customers to “Go see Cal”.
For over 40 years, Cal operated Worthington Ford with his trusted business partner and General Manager Dave Karalis. Cal and Dave worked side-by-side as an inseparable team, and eventually became family when Cal’s grandson Nick Worthington married Dave’s daughter.
At the height of his career, Cal operated 29 dealerships across five states, as well as profitable businesses in oil and gas. Cal’s dedication and business acumen made him one of the most prolific figures in the automotive industry, selling more than one million vehicles over the span of his career.
Cal passed away in 2013, leaving a tremendous legacy behind. Nick Worthington succeeded Cal as President after his passing, and successfully operated Worthington Ford with Dave Karalis for the last decade.
Over the last 5 years, Performance Brokerage Services has advised on the sale of over 300 dealerships, making it the highest volume dealership brokerage firm in North America. In 2022, the company consummated 92 transactions, marking a record-breaking year. Jason Stopnitzky, the exclusive agent for this transaction and Co-Founder of Performance Brokerage Services commented, “This transaction has been one of the most exciting and fulfilling moments in my career. Cal was an absolute legend, and his commercials inspired countless people to join the automotive industry. When I got the call to sell Worthington Ford, I immediately knew what a special opportunity this was! Over the decades, if anyone in the auto business has demonstrated how to draw in customers, it has been Cal Worthington. It has been a blessing and a privilege to be trusted to work with Nick Worthington and his family to transition Cal’s legacy into the next chapter.”
Worthington Ford was acquired by dealers Bob Nouri and Pete Shaver, who are actively growing their dealership group, the Nouri/Shaver Automotive Group. The Ford dealership will be led by Nouri, Shaver, and their newly appointed CEO, Armina Mgerian. This acquisition marks Nouri and Shaver’s 17th dealership. In 2022, the duo generated over $2 billion in revenue and currently employs over two thousand individuals. Bob Nouri remarked, “One of the best things that ever happened to us was meeting Jason Stopnitzky of Performance Brokerage Services. Jason’s word is his bond and we’ve never felt this good about working with someone. Jason’s assistance with our acquisition of Worthington Ford was priceless.”
The dealership will be renamed BP Ford of Long Beach, which stands for Bob Pete Ford of Long Beach, and remain at its current location at 2950 North Bellflower Boulevard in, Long Beach, California. Nouri plans to pay homage to the Worthington legacy by using Cal’s catchphrase with a twist- customers looking for a better car can now “Go see Bob”.
Bob Nouri was represented by business transaction law expert Monica Hoenshell, Partner at Calvert Law in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
Nick Worthington was represented by Larry Miles of Miles McLeod, LLP in Sacramento, California.