Marge Schott's dealership sold
By Cliff Peale
Enquirer staff writer
Marge Schott’s Buick dealership in Norwood was sold this week to Mark Sweeney, who already owns a Pontiac/GMC dealership in Queensgate. But both will move within a year to a combined location along Interstate 71.
Sweeney said the purchase of Schott Buick at 4300 Montgomery Road in Norwood closed Tuesday(9/13/05). He would not reveal the sale price. An appraisal filed in Hamilton County Probate Court last year valued the real estate at $825,000, but that did not include the value of the dealership.
The seller was the Marge and Charles J. Schott Foundation, which received the bulk of more than $123.4 million in assets after Marge Schott died at age 75 in March 2004.
Built in 1952 and never renovated, the dealership had run down to the point that it was losing thousands of dollars a month and was only selling half a dozen cars a month, Sweeney said.
He said he had already sold three cars Thursday and hoped to sell 40-60 cars a month.
“There’s a lot of memories there, a lot of war stories,” said Sweeney, who owns Walt Sweeney Pontiac/GMC Truck at Eighth and Freeman streets. “It’s sort of sad to see the end of a generation.”
Sweeney is the cousin of local car dealer Jake Sweeney, and his brother Walt owns Walt Sweeney Ford in Westwood. His grandfather was a good friend of the Schotts, he said.
The sale is another of the big assets owned by Marge Schott when the former Reds owner died. The estate already sold her one-fifteenth stake in the Reds back to the other owners for $6.1 million.
The estate still owns the University Plaza shopping center in Corryville, valued at $6.4 million, and Schott’s estate in Indian Hill, valued at $18 million.
Sweeney wouldn’t reveal the exact site he’s targeting for the combined dealership but said it would be near the city of Cincinnati border along the Interstate 71 corridor. He said the site is 12 acres, more than double what he needs for the current business. He said he could acquire another dealership to fill the space, or even develop it for a different purpose.
“I hope we’ll be doing more than just selling cars,” he said.