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Dutch Miller Kia buys South Charleston dealer

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For The State Journal

Chris Miller, who owns the Dutch Miller Kia dealership in Barboursville, has bought White Kia Dodge in South Charleston. 

And Miller says he's eyeing other dealerships for purchase.

"I believe we can provide something to the Charleston market that others are not doing now," Miller said. 

This will be his first experience selling Dodge and Ram vehicles.

Miller said he has, on order, enough vehicles to dramatically increase the South Charleston dealership's inventory, with a goal of doubling its sales volume in the first year. 

 "If we can grow the business the way we think we can, it will be awesome," he said.

And his growth agenda for his business, Miller said, includes the acquisition of other dealerships, potentially including one or more out-of-state dealers.

Miller, known for his off-beat television commercials, represents the third generation of his Huntington family to be in the auto sales business. His grandfather, H.D. (Dutch) Miller bought the former Roger Dean Chevrolet in 1961 and re-named it Dutch Miller Chevrolet. It's now owned by Dutch's son Matt and his two grandsons, Chris and Sam. Over the years, the dealership grew to include the Hyundai and Kia brands.

In a 2011 interview, Miller recalled his start in the family business. 

"When I was a kid, I wanted expensive Air Jordan athletic shoes, and Dad said ‘Get a job.' So I took on two paper routes," he said. 

At age 15 Miller started washing cars at the family dealership. And at 18, he started selling them.

Miller graduated magna cum laude from Ohio's Dennison University with a degree in economics. After a brief stint selling cars at a Columbus, Ohio, dealership, he returned to Huntington and the family business.

Some local viewers say they hate his zany TV commercials, but others say they love the spots. Hate them or love them, there seems little question they sell cars. Miller has built Dutch Miller Kia of Barboursville into one of the busiest Kia dealerships in the nation, regularly outselling other Kia dealerships located in major metropolitan areas.