In summer 2018, Michael Rawluk, the former chief operating officer of Winnipeg’s Birchwood Automotive Group, was hired by a bleeding AutoCanada as part of sweeping changes designed to turn around the dealership group.
According to Paul Antony, chairman of AutoCanada, Rawluk, 45, has systematically deconstructed and rebuilt the company around boosting used-car sales, increasing turnaround in service departments and boosting new-vehicle sales, and not at the expense of profitability.
The moves boosted Canadian net income for the 2019 third quarter to $10.7 million, which helped the company cut overall losses to $4.1 million from $15 million in the same quarter in 2018.
“We’re basically taking everything back to ground zero and starting to rebuild an organization, and that comes with new cost structure, new team, new culture. It’s exactly kind of what Michael’s been doing,” Antony said on a third-quarter earnings call with investors.