HOUSTON -- Group 1 Automotive Inc. today announced that it completed the acquisition of Peterson Automotive Group. It consists of two dealerships in the Sacramento area and another two in San Diego. Total annual revenues are approximately $320 million.

"This acquisition gives Group 1 outstanding operations in three of the most desirable markets in California, including our existing Los Angeles platform, the Miller Automotive Group," said B.B. Hollingsworth Jr., Group 1's chairman, president and CEO. Chuck Peterson will join Group 1 as president of the new platform.

The Sacramento-area dealerships, located in Folsom, are Toyota/Scion and Kia franchises. The San Diego dealerships are Dodge, Chrysler, Jeep, Kia, Subaru, Hyundai and Isuzu franchises, for a total of nine franchises under the platform.

Group 1 also recently acquired Pontiac and GMC franchises to augment the Maxwell Automotive Group platform in Central Texas. The franchises will operate from a newly developed dealership in Austin, Texas, and are expected to generate approximately $55 million in annualized revenues.

Total consideration paid for completing both transactions was about $51.1 million in cash, net of cash received, and 306,321 shares of Group 1 common stock.

Group 1's target is to acquire franchises with $1 billion of expected aggregate annual revenues in 2004. Year to date, it has added 16 franchises with annual revenues of approximately $690 million.

"We have acquired more than two-thirds of this year's $1 billion target while maintaining our disciplined approach to acquisitions and focus on returns," said Hollingsworth.