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by Tim Engstrom
Posted at 9:53 PM, Dec 25, 2012 on www.news-press.com
Fuccillo, of course, is the owner of Fuccillo Kia of Cape Coral, and his TV commercials, giveaways and promotions have made him a household name since the dealership opened in December 2010.
His Cape Coral location has become the top Kia dealership in the nation and the top seller in his own network of 23 dealerships, mostly in New York. His biggest promotion this past year, HUGEfest 2012, included a full-on rock concert, plus $300,000 in cash and car giveaways.
"This dealership has been unbelievable," he said. "It's been a great year, and you ain't seen nothing yet."
Fuccillo said the dealership could sell as many as 7,000 new Kia models this year.
"We could sell more if we could get more from the factory, but the supply has been tight," he said.
"I think he is a game-changer," said Mike Quaintance, president of the Chamber of Commerce of Cape Coral. "His dealership draws people to Cape Coral, and there aren't many businesses that draw people across the river. It is so regional in its reach."
He will do even more next year to draw people across the river. In October, he purchased about 10.2 acres just east of his dealership on Pine Island Road for $2.2 million and expects to build a large auto service facility and additional lot space starting in the first quarter.
This month, he expects to close on 77 acres on U.S. 41 in Charlotte County, just south of the Sarasota County line. He said he decided that a 7.4-acre parcel he purchased off Euclid Street in July wasn't enough space for what he plans. He said he plans to open a Kia dealership on up to 25 acres and develop the rest, possibly building a hotel.
Fuccillo hasn't been saturating local advertising in recent weeks up to the standards set earlier this year, but he said that will change soon.
"We are going to be everywhere in January," he said. "We've got a lot of things planned. I can't say too much because I have to keep it close to the vest."
But Southwest Florida may one day see even more of Fuccillo. His son, Billy Fuccillo Jr., 23, opened Fuccillo Nissan in Liverpool, N.Y., this year, and his father said he would like for his only child to take over the northern dealerships someday.
"I want to play golf, and I like Florida," he said. "I want him to be able to run things in New York, and I will just stay here."