Photo contributed by Scott Murphy Scott Murphy, center, of Nick’s Custom Golf Cars and Utility Vehicles has purchased Central Valley Golf & Utility in Fresno.
Written by Edward Smith
A Fresno-based golf cart company got a second chance when a Sacramento company came in as a last-minute buyer.
Nick’s Custom Golf Cars and Utility Vehicles purchased Central Valley Golf & Utility in March, according to Scott Murphy, owner of Nick’s.
The doors had closed for Central Valley in January when owner Lew Solomon retired.
“After owning the business for 27 years, I just thought it was time to take it a little bit easy,” Solomon said. “Ever since college, I worked every day for 61 years.”
Both being Club Car dealers, the duo had met and Solomon told told Murphy he was looking to close up shop, Murphy said. They were able to reach a deal and Murphy brought over seven people from Central Valley.
“I wasn’t going to buy it unless I had the people,” Murphy said. The deal closed early March and by mid-month they were open.
Customers go beyond merely golf courses.
With the needs of farmers and ranchers for his product, Murphy said he had been looking to get into the Central Valley for some time. Everything from resorts to college campuses use them to move people and equipment.
Before buying the business, Murphy wanted to keep the Central Valley name for a year during the transition, but he decided now would be a good time for a name change. Murphy is still planning on keeping the original online presence as Google populates the Central Valley name as the first search option when looking for electric vehicles in the area.
Murphy came into the business in 2017 after working at Sleep Train and spending too much time on the road. Himself a golfer, when he went into Nick’s in Sacramento, he began talking about the business with the owner’s son. It was in that conversation that he decided to purchase the business. The locations in Sacramento and Benicia would make up his first business.
“It was a little nerve-wracking,” he said. “I had just gotten into the operation and started figuring it out. It was going to take time to lay the right framework where we could capitalize on the opportunities.”