North American aftermarket parts distributor Genuine Parts Company is moving into the European region with the buyout of Alliance Automotive Group (AAG) for $2 billion.

AAG supplies the aftermarket network in France, Germany and the UK and is the second largest parts distributor in Europe with 1,800 outlets. Its brands include GroupAuto France, GroupAuto UK, Partners, Gef’Auto and Précisium.

Genuine Parts distributes automotive replacement parts in the US, Canada, Mexico and Australasia through its Napa Automotive brand. It also distributes electrical and electronic components. Revenues last year hit $15.3 billion.

“We are excited to combine with AAG and enter the European markets with critical scale and a leading market position in the automotive aftermarket,” said Paul Donahue, CEO and president of Genuine Parts. “AAG is poised to contribute significant sales growth and earnings accretion to Genuine Parts Company and also serves to enhance the GPC platform for long-term, sustainable expansion across the global automotive parts industry.”

Jean-Jacques Lafont, CEO and chairman of AAG, said: "The AAG team has tremendous respect for Genuine Parts Company and its well-deserved reputation as a longstanding leader in the automotive parts industry. We are very pleased to combine our two great businesses and leverage our collective resources and expertise to accelerate growth.”

Genuine Parts bought AAG from investment firm Blackstone, which took over AAG in 2014.

The takeover represents the latest step in the consolidation of the aftermarket business in Europe which is being driven in part by investment from the US.

The largest parts retailer in Europe is now US-based LKQ, a provider of service and accessory parts, which owns Euro Parts in the UK and Sator in Europe.

Recently, Uni-Select, a North American parts distributor, invested in The Parts Alliance, the second largest distributor of aftermarket parts in the UK.

Last month, meanwhile, AAG itself bought Klapper, an aftermarket parts distributor based in Germany.