Hawaii’s Only Volvo Cars dealership forced to close

Hawaii’s Only Volvo Cars dealership forced to close

John Martinho, john.martinho@envyag.com

Honolulu, HI, December 14, 2017– Hawaii’s only Volvo Cars dealership has been forced to close. Envy Hawaii LLC dba Volvo Cars of Honolulu received a franchise termination letter from the manufacturer, Volvo Car USA late last week.

Volvo’s decision to terminate the franchise rights of Envy, comes after a yearlong and ongoing battle in federal courts.

In November of 2016, Envy sent a demand letter to Volvo to cure its breach of contract and fraudulent business practices. Volvo retaliated by filing a complaint against Envy in the state of California. The lawsuit filed by Volvo last holiday season came after Volvo lured Envy into thinking an agreement would be reached. The suit has since been dismissed by a federal judge.

Envy has struggled to maintain its operations after being severely crippled last January. Envy was not allowed to sell new Volvo’s for nearly a month. On December 20, 2016, Hawaii’s Motor Vehicle Licensing Board unanimously deferred a decision on granting Volvo their distributor license. Envy was notified at the beginning of January 2017 by a letter from Hawaii’s DCCA.

Mike Fedotov, the owner of Envy, said “It’s hard to believe that a multinational, multibillion-dollar corporation like Volvo would be so careless and unwilling to help in a situation they caused”, referring to Volvo’s license issue.

 “After reading the letter from DCCA, I contacted my Regional VP of Volvo, and asked them what are we supposed to do? My employees are worried and my customers think that we, the dealership didn’t have a license. Can you guys please issue a statement to ensure everybody that Volvo is working on the situation and that will be resolved immediately.” said Fedotov.

 John Martinho, VP and General Manager of Envy, said “We lost a lot of money” and “the dealership’s reputation had never recovered from last January”. Previously Envy was #1 in customer sales satisfaction for the entire Western region.

 Fedotov says that during the year he invested his last dollar into the business, in order to keep it running and to attempt to find a buyer for the dealership.

 “I am heart-broken for all my employees and customers, this is not news I wanted to give them before Christmas. I love the team I have here and all the customers that supported us from the beginning. We are the only Volvo dealer in the state, and Volvo has said nothing about plans to take care of my customers.”, said Fedotov.

 Martinho says “Volvo sends a termination letter to us and then leaves everybody hanging. I had to let my staff know, and after doing so the last two mechanics we had quit because they were scared. At the beginning of 2017 we had almost 50 employees, and during the year was reduced to 11 before this happened”.

  Martinho continues to say, “We’ve been fighting all year to keep our heads above water for employees and customers until we can get the dealership sold, and Volvo knew this. You would think Volvo would be prepared and let us know where we can send our customers to service their cars. All Volvo said was they are terminating our franchise agreement and that no further action was needed.”

 “I want to thank Hawaii for all the support throughout the years. Thank you for allowing my team, and I be part of your Ohana. I pray that Volvo has a plan to service the customers of Hawaii. Also, I want to thank my team and the general manager for their hard work and passion.” Fedotov stated.

The trial for Envy’s original lawsuit against Volvo is set for November 2018.

Envy Hawaii LLC began sales and service of new Volvo’s in December 2012 after purchasing the dealership from Jackson Volvo. Envy expanded its services in 2014 selling pre-owned vehicles on the Windward side in 2014, and later developed the first of its kind car rental service, Envy.Rent. Envy has previously been #1 in sales volume in its market and #1 in customer sales satisfaction in the Western region.