published Saturday, May 16th, 2009

Gregory pursues Chrysler dealership

The effort to wrest the Joe Prebul outlet from bankruptcy court is lauded by the automaker.

by Lauren Gregory
Audio clip

Joe Kirby

PDF: Prebul government sentencing memorandum

PDF: Prebul memo to dismiss indictment

Article: Prebul bankruptcy filing reveals grim financials

PDF: Prebul financial documents

Article: Court set to OK sale of Prebul Infiniti

PDF: Motion for contempt

Article: Prebul trustee says Chrysler in contempt of court

PDF: Motions for default and removal

Article: Prebul case now in federal court in Chattanooga

Article: Liquidation of Prebul items coming to close

Article: Gregory pursues Chrysler dealership

Article: Prebul facing criminal charges after federal indictment

PDF: Prebul indictment

Article: Tennessee: Debts small and large mounting in Prebul bankruptcy

XLS: Prebul Debts

PDF: Prebul Debt

Article: Chattanooga: Prebul car sales going to creditors

Article: Chattanooga: Prebul auto franchise rights sell for $900,000

Article: Chattanooga: New faces, locations for former dealerships

Chattanooga: Prebul dealerships, customers in limbo

PDF: Complaint

Article: Chattanooga: New federal lawsuit filed in Prebul dispute

PDF: Bensusan Exhibit 7

PDF:Bensusan Exhibit 1 thru 6

PDF: Bensusan Filed Complaint

PDF: Bankruptcy claim against Bensusan

PDF: Complaint filed against TSE Group

PDF: Compliant with cost of bond

Article: Chattanooga: Prebul dispute embittered by attorney barbs

PDF: Prebul Intervenors Motion to Intervene and to Amend Counter claim

PDF: Joseph Prebul's Motion to Intervene

PDF: Motion to Expedite

Video: Prebul released on bond

PDF: Motion to sell free and clear

Article: Chattanooga: 'People are still buying' says Prebul attorney

Article: Tennessee: Civil lawsuit against Prebul dropped

PDF: Court filings

PDF: civil case filed against Prebul AutoGroup owne

Article: Hamilton County: $5 million bond upheld in Prebul civil suit

Article: Hamilton County: Prebul cases intertwined, trustee says

PDF: Prebul legal documents

Article:Chattanooga: Prebul criminal case not yet to indictment stage

Article:Chattanooga: Judge rules Prebul AutoGroup can continue operations

PDF: Trustee Jerry Farinash’s motion to intervene in the Circuit Court lawsuit

Article: Chattanooga: Trustee seeks buyer for Prebul dealerships

Court order for Prebul

Prebul bankruptcy

PDF: Prebul lawsuit

Article: Prebul dealerships forced into liquidation

PDF: Prebul Infiniti

PDF: Prebul Automotive

PDF: Prebul Imports

PDF: Prebul Jeep

PDF: Prebul Motorcars

PDF: Prebul Motors

Prebul Chrysler Jeep Dodge may be on the chopping block, but that doesn’t mean Chattanooga will be stuck without a Chrysler dealer, according to regional auto dealer Carl Gregory.

Mr. Gregory bid $40,000 for the franchise rights to Joseph Prebul’s now-bankrupt Chapman Road business, and he says he plans to pursue a dealership here even if his agreement in U.S. Bankruptcy Court crumbles.

Chrysler announced this week it will close almost 800 dealerships nationwide, including Mr. Prebul’s, and the ramifications on Mr. Prebul’s bankruptcy case are still unclear. But Mr. Gregory isn’t waiting around to find out.

“We are going to move forward as if we’re going to be the next dealer in Chattanooga,” said Mr. Gregory, who already owns dealerships in Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee, including five Chrysler franchises.

Joe Kirby, owner of Edd Kirby Adventure Chevrolet in Dalton, Ga., is a fellow Chrysler retailer and says it’s altogether possible that the manufacturer will approve Mr. Gregory’s application.

“Of course he can still go for it, but he’ll have to go through Chrysler” rather than Mr. Prebul’s bankruptcy trustee, Jerrold Farinash, Mr. Kirby said.

The Dalton dealer has been working with Mr. Farinash to purchase much of Mr. Prebul’s inventory, which is being liquidated to pay off Mr. Prebul’s creditors. Mr. Kirby bought 99 used cars from Mr. Prebul’s Dalton location for $1 million in April, and on Wednesday closed on 21 more from Prebul Volvo’s and Prebul Infiniti’s Brainerd Road lots in Chattanooga for $250,000.

Mr. Kirby says he sees potential in a new Chrysler dealership in Chattanooga — as long as the company comes through its reorganization.

“If Chrysler succeeds, the Chattanooga (store) would succeed under a good operator,” Mr. Kirby said.

Mr. Gregory said he’s sure the corporation will remain solvent, and says it won’t want to pull out of the Chattanooga market.

“There is going to be Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep and Fiat representation in Chattanooga. I am certain of that,” he said.

He said since he has already submitted his name as a potential buyer through the bankruptcy deal, he should be first in line for the rights.

“We have contracted to acquire the facilities or property, but I can’t tell you where or when,” Mr. Gregory said. “We’ve met all the criteria, so it’s all up to Chrysler.”

Chrysler spokeswoman Kathy Graham said the company welcomes his overtures, because it intends to maintain a presence in the area.

“Chattanooga’s an important market for Chrysler, and we definitely want to have representation there,” Ms. Graham said.

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