California Harley-Davidson dealership sold

News release

Daniel Stern has a long history in the motorcycle industry, starting out as a motorcycle mechanic and drag racer back in 1979. Before Dan opened House of Thunder Harley-Davidson in 2000, he had already retired once.

Dan retired from a major aftermarket manufacturer/distributor, Custom Chrome, Inc., after having personally been involved in the development of thousands of products for Harley-Davidson motorcycles. His proudest accomplishment was developing that company into an industry leader in customer service.

The current facility was in the planning stages for 3+ years and opened February 20, 2004. Dan was a long time Harley enthusiast and it was obvious when visiting House of Thunder Harley-Davidson that this dealership was owned by a Harley-Davidson rider.

Dan initially contacted George Chaconas from Performance Brokerage Services, a national Harley-Davidson and new car dealership broker, over a year and a half ago. George traveled to House of Thunder Harley-Davidson in California to visit the dealership and Dan interviewed him. At that point, since selling is as much of an emotional decision as it is a business decision, Dan had not yet made a commitment to sell.

In August 2014, Dan contacted George again and engaged him to sell his dealership. By October, House of Thunder Harley-Davidson was under contract with first-time buyers, Bret Irvine and Rich Gargano, leading to a quick close in January 2015.

Following the sale of their dealership, Daniel and Shirley Stern commented,

“When you make the decision to sell your dealership, you want a broker that is as focused on his job as you are on your business. You want a broker who will deliver the same quality that you have delivered to your customers. You want a broker that will work harder than you or any of your staff. That person is George Chaconas. The key to running a successful business is to listen to what your customer wants. George did exactly that. Filtered out the tire kickers, brought real candidates and always had my best interest at heart. George’s communication skills are above reproach. Selling is an intense time and you not only want to know that your broker is doing his job, but what is he doing and how is he doing it. Truthfully, I have no idea how one person can have as much energy, communicate as effectively, steadily and with clarity as George does. He didn’t call to shoot the breeze, he called with updates and a plan. George made the whole process seamless, understood my goals – not a fire sale – and delivered in record time. I could not be happier. Thanks George and Performance Brokerage Services!”

Bret Irvine was a partner and General Manager in the past for RideNow and Revolution Motorsports. Rich Gargano also worked for Revolution Motorsports’ Harley-Davidson dealerships. Bret sold his interest as a partner and together with Rich, decided to invest in a Harley-Davidson dealership of their own. George knew that Bret and Rich were in the market for a dealership and approached them regarding House of Thunder Harley-Davidson.

Mr. Gargano commented, “A huge thank you to George Chaconas for guiding us through our first Harley-Davidson dealership purchase. George was always available and took the time necessary for us to get comfortable with our purchase. George’s experience, contacts and overall helpfulness was reassuring when it came time to finalize the purchase.”

Mr. Irvine commented, “Thank you, thank you, thank you George Chaconas for your persistence, diligence and encouragement which ultimately led to the successful purchase of House of Thunder Harley-Davidson. When George first introduced me to the opportunity, my first reaction was no. But George was consistent with his follow ups and encouragement to revisit the opportunity, to take the time to go to the dealership, to get a feel for the culture, the area, and the potential opportunity. Ultimately, my partner, Rich Gargano and I really liked what we saw and recognized the opportunity that George had brought to us and what a truly perfect fit House of Thunder Harley-Davidson was.”

House of Thunder Harley-Davidson will remain at its current location at 16175 Condit Road and will continue to operate under the same name.


George Chaconas, the representative for this transaction stated and the head of the National Harley-Davidson and Powersports Division commented, “One of the most rewarding aspects of our line of work is that at times we are involved in life changing events. I am honored to have assisted first-time buyers, Bret and Rich, with their recent purchase of House of Thunder Harley-Davidson and welcome them to the Harley-Davidson family. I wish the Sterns a relaxing retirement and thank them for the opportunity to be of service.”

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