Safelite and Southern Glass Agreement a 'Business Decision'
November 15, 2012

by Casey Neeley, cneeley@glass.com

Safelite Group announced today that it has reached an agreement to acquire a majority of the vehicle glass division assets of Southern Glass & Plastics. Safelite officials anticipate finalizing the deal by Saturday, November 17 at 12:01 a.m.

"While much of our growth has come organically from expanding the company's existing sales and profit base, we've also had various strategic, targeted acquisitions in the last several years," says Tom Feeney, president and CEO of Safelite Group. "We expect that Southern Glass's clients, customers, business partners and employees will benefit from our commitment to be the leader in the vehicle glass industry."

Alan Epley, owner of Southern Glass and Plastics, told glassBYTEs.com™/AGRR™ magazine, "This was a business decision for me. I'm 65 years old and I've been in auto glass for 35 years; it was time to retire. I've been very impressed with how professionally Safelite has handled the acquisition and I feel that our employees are in good hands."

"Even though we have been healthy competitors in the past, Safelite offered the best option for me and my employees, particularly in today's challenging economic times," says Epley. "I look forward to my upcoming retirement after the transition period."

The Southern Glass acquisition marks the second time this month that Safelite has acquired a company whose management served on the board of the Independent Glass Association (IGA) following the purchase of Klein-Dickert Co. Inc. November 1.

Epley currently serves as the president for the IGA.

"Alan has served the IGA board extremely well during his tenure; he is a true Southern gentleman," says Rick Rosar, owner of Rapid Glass and treasurer for the IGA. "Alan is a highly respected individual and has assisted and educated many of us in the AGRR industry during his 36 plus years of experience. The next president of the IGA, whom we will announce very soon, will definitely have some big shoes to fill. The IGA has strengthened and become more united during Alan's presidency. The IGA board wishes Alan well and the best of luck in whatever direction life takes him."

"As a personal friend of Alan's, I will miss his enthusiasm and the "matter of fact" way he approached our industry issues," continues Rosar. "Alan was definitely an 'all-in' kind of guy. I will also miss the way Alan would always address me with 'sir' and 'Mister'—you don't hear that very often these days. Alan has a wonderful family and beautiful relationship with his loving wife. Hopefully he will have more time to travel, which I know he loves, and be able to spend a little more time on the golf course."

After the agreement is finalized, Epley will remain with the company as a consultant during the transition period until retirement. General manager David Packett will also aid in the transition.

This story is an original story by AGRR™ magazine/glassBYTEs.com™. Subscribe to AGRR™ Magazine.
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