Madison, WI-based CSM Companies, Inc. and French-Ellison Truck Center, LTD, based in East San Antonio, TX, announced this week that they will merge on March 31st to establish one of the largest commercial truck dealership groups in the U.S. The combined firm will operate 19 facilities.

Founded in 1978, CSM Companies currently operates 12 Kenworth dealerships as well as 3 independent service centers in Wisconsin, Michigan, Nebraska, and Illinois.  The company’s locations do business as Wisconsin Kenworth, Michigan Kenworth, Sahling Kenworth, and Dedicated Fleet Services.  The company was named Kenworth Dealer of the Year in 2013.

French-Ellison Truck Center was founded in 1968.  It operates 4 Kenworth and 3 Mack dealerships in South Texas.  The company was named Kenworth Dealer of the Year in 2008.

“Our customers will benefit from the convenience of a larger footprint and customer-focused capabilities that come with greater economy of scale,” said Jim Moeller, president of CSM.

“This merger continues a growth trend for CSM,” he continued. “Our goal is to execute measured expansion as our customers’ needs increase, both geographically and in products and services.”

Jay Ellison, president of French-Ellison pointed out that both companies have “built solid reputations for excellence and performance. We’ve both been market share leaders in our respective territories. This merger lets us develop our strengths still further.

“Combining our outstanding sales and service staff sends a message to our customers that we are committed to providing full support in multiple regions,” Ellison added.

Ellison will serve as president and Moller as CEO of the merged company, which will be headquartered in Madison, WI.