Car dealer John Hughes says two executives appointed to the board ahead of a public listing of his company would be among candidates to ultimately succeed him.
Mr Hughes has named chief financial officer Steve Strack and sales and marketing chief executive Gary Fitch as executive directors of the newly registered John Hughes Group.
The executives and Mr Hughes are the first board appointees as preparations continue for a float potentially worth $200 million of the Victoria Park dealership and associated finance and insurance businesses in April.
"Without blowing my own trumpet, I don't think there'd be three better people in WA," Mr Hughes said.
Mr Strack, 47, has been with Mr Hughes for 10 years after previously working for Automotive Holdings Group. Mr Fitch, 60, has spent about 25 years at the dealership.
The 78-year-old Mr Hughes said while he had no plans to retire, going public meant he had to prepare for a time when he would no longer be running the business.
"I've got to accept that I can't be around forever," he said.
"It's something I've been putting off and off as a private company because I suppose deep down you tend to think you're infallible.
"Up until now the thought of reporting to a board didn't have a lot of appeal.
"If anything happens to me they'll run the business and I will put in place a succession plan yet to be announced as to who would run the business without me."
He said Mr Strack and Mr Fitch would be "in the mix".
The industry veteran said he planned to have six or seven directors on the board, including two with public company experience. "I want kindred spirits, people who bring things to the table," he said. "I don't want guardians as such though I understand there's a need for that. I wanted movers and shakers."
He was looking for people aged in their 40s and 50s who had experience in either in motor vehicles, finance, compliance or insurance.
Under the float being handled by Euroz, Mr Hughes will offer 40 per cent of the company to investors. Like listed vehicle dealer networks AHG and AP Eagers, he plans to start acquiring other dealerships.
"It's happening already," he said. "I've had two, possibly three knock on my door. I want to concentrate on expanding initially in Western Australia. I'll go east when I see the need to or when the opportunity arises."
But he did not want the company to expand as rapidly as Perth-based AHG, which has 150 dealerships in Australian and New Zealand and a market capitalisation of $894 million.
Mr Hughes said his company's national finance and insurance businesses as well as brand recognition were the main points of difference with his listed rivals.