Hopefully the Boys get their "Pep" back.

Pep Boys – Manny, Moe & Jack, the Philadelphia-based,  729-store auto-parts and car-repair chain, said it had agreed to be bought by  Los Angeles-based Gores Group for $15 a share, if share-  holders approve. “We’ll be making further investments in the business, and there’s going to be  more stores,” Ryan Wald, mergers-and-acquisitions director at  $4 billion-in-assets Gores, told me.

Pep Boys employs about 19,000 at its Allegheny Avenue headquarters, four  distribution centers, and stores. Chief executive Michael Odell  and members of his management team have not yet signed contracts to work under  Gores, “but they like our team. They are here to make our vision a reality,”  Odell told me. “We’re doing this deal because we believe in what this management has  accomplished to date and where they’re headed,” Wald told me. “We run our  businesses with a long-term view, as if we’re going to own them forever,” so  long as they yield capital returns to the firm’s investors, including founder Alec Gores, pension funds, and others. LINK

Pep Boys has been a Philadelphia based company for almost a hundred years. This week they were sold to a L.A. based investment group. *GASP* This story hit home for my family because the Oberfrau has worked for Pep Boys for about eighteen years now. You can imagine our initial shock at hearing the news. Immediately our thoughts turned to the future and what this sale means for her employment. Typically when these acquisitions happen her position is one that may get farmed out as a new team comes on board. So far though it appears that her job and the thousands of others in the area will remain secure. That’s a good thing.

But it also forces us to confront the larger issue here, one that has presidential politics written all over it. Mitt Romney has been beaten up in the MSM for working for a company that orchestrated these type of deals. “Corporate Raider” is the usual derogatory term that is applied. In my opinion I don’t believe that’s true. In the business world companies are either healthy, stable or sick. (in government it’s usually sick) Companies exist to make money. When they don’t they are sick. Sometimes sick patients die. Sometimes horses have to be put down. Businesses that don’t stay healthy and fight off infection, or lose their way can become terminally ill.

Pep Boys has been mostly stable for many years now. Hopefully the investment group can return the company to the healthy stage and the company (as well as the local economy and the employees) will benefit. Like the lions and tigers of the world who pick off the old and sick of the herds, “corporate Raiders” pare sick businesses from the economy so that new ones can emerge. It’s only government (like the Obama administration) and unions that think you can stay in business by LOSING MONEY, especially tax payer money. Thanks to this investment group Pep Boys gets a new lease on life and the chance to prosper going forward.

So for now the Oberfrau’s dream of sitting on the couch, eating Bon Bons and collecting unemployment for years on end has been dashed. Back to the salt mine girl!




  1. Randal Graves says:

    I remember going to Pep Boys all the time when I lived in the city and they were really the only game in town. Unfortunately for them (but good for the consumer), their competition swooped in with the same or better pricing and much better customer service.

    Poor Romney; he’s just like us, worried about getting a pink slip at any time. How will he feed his family?

    • Who doesn’t want to be wildly successful and rich? That used to be the American dream. It seems like anymore it’s only bad to be rich and conservative. Mitt Romney (who by any standard is a decent guy, maybe a bit too decent) gets thrashed by the media for being …too rich. Yet guys like Bill Gates (darling of the left and by all accounts a decent guy) gets a pass. Hmmmm…
      Lets not even talk about the Hollywood rich…

      • Randal Graves says:

        I’m cool with Romney being rich; hell, I’m the one that said he has the best chance to beat Obama. My problem with him (and most other politicans) is when he says he’s “just like us” and “worried about getting fired”. They all need to stop the BS lying.

  2. Old NFO says:

    And hopefully she doesn’t get to sit on the couch until SHE wants to…

  3. Bob G. says:

    And another ICON falls by the wayside…

    Geez, I remember seeing their sign from the EL before you came into the Church St. platform (heading to Bridge St).

    That was a LONG time ago, too, when they had the BROWN cars and wicker seats!
    I always liked MOE the best…musta been that cigar…LOL.

    Great post.

    Roll safe out there.

  4. Ingineer66 says:

    You nailed it Randal. We have a local State Senator who puts on his bumper stickers, “He’s one of us”. No my grandfather did not leave me a 10,000 acre rice farm, so you are not one of me.

    I like Romney and think he is the best option currently. But he is not and never has been a regular Joe.

  5. Ingineer66 says:

    Interesting about Pep Boys getting beat in the customer service arena in their home turf. Out here in Cali they are known for good customer service. Maybe not the lowest prices, but good selection and helpful staff.

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