Anderson Economic Group Work

Market and “Good Cause” Analysis: Mercedes-Benz Dealership – Chicago Area

The attorneys for a franchised dealer of Mercedes-Benz USA operating in the Greater Chicago Area retained Anderson Economic Group after Mercedes-Benz USA appointed a new dealer within the “Area of Influence” of their client. Anderson Economic Group was tasked with evaluating the effects of the new dealer on the current dealer’s operations, and analyzing the market before and after the introduction of another dealership.

We completed an expert report that began with an evaluation of the fundamental rationale of the franchise relationship and the responsibilities of both parties. The report continued with a detailed analysis of sales data, the pattern of sales as distance from the retail outlet increases, the geographic and demographic characteristics of the changed market areas, the concentration of Mercedes-Benz dealers in other cities, and the likely effect of the new dealer on the sales of the existing dealer.

The analysis concluded that there was not “good cause” under the Illinois Statute for the appointment of a new dealer in the area. Our report rebutted contrary reports submitted by USAI and Price Waterhouse Coopers, and also commented on a report submitted by RL Polk.

After submission of the report, Patrick Anderson was deposed on its contents. Mercedes-Benz later settled the case by allowing the Plaintiff to sell the dealership to a new owner that would be given a chance to relocate, and also allowing the Plaintiff to open a new dealership in a more favorable market.