Modern Tire Dealer

APR 2019

Magazine for the professional tire industry

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Page 11 of 85

M T D A p r i l 2 0 1 9 10 N e w s / V i e w s Bites RNR targets Vegas RNR Tire Express expects to add 37 loca- tions in 2019, and considers the Las Vegas market ripe for new stores. The company wants to add stores in Henderson, Las Vegas and North Las Vegas. Fewer shipments in 2019 The U.S. Tire Manufacturers Associa- tion projects 2019 U.S. tire shipments will decrease to 327 million units compared to 329.4 million units in 2018. Shipments of replacement light truck tires are expected to increase slightly — by 0.8%. Chandgie to lead sales Yokohama Tire Corp. has hired Stan Chand- gie as vice president of consumer sales. He replaces Larry Kull, who was named vice president of sales and business operations. One winner with J.D. Power The Michelin brand scored the highest in three of four vehicle segments in the 2019 Original Equipment Tire Customer Satisfac- tion Study by J.D. Power. Goodyear beat Michelin in the performance category, preventing a clean sweep. Kötz takes the lead Christian Kötz has taken over leadership of Continental AG's tire division and corporate purchasing. He replaces Nikolai Setzer, who was transferred to the company's automotive group. Bridgestone pushes retreads The new Fleets We Depend On campaign from Bridgestone Americas Inc. includes a 27-city road tour and awards program de- signed to educate small- and medium-sized fleets on the benefits of retread tires. Camso video is a shocker Camso Inc. has turned a serious issue in the material handling world — the static that builds up in non-marking forklift tires — into an educational video that makes the Solideal PON 775 NMAS tire a superhero. Cooper wins Mercedes OE The 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE is a landmark SUV for Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. It's the first Mercedes vehicle to feature one of the company's tires as original equipment. The tire: the Discoverer SRXLE in sizes 255/50R19XL and 275/50R20. Southern Tire Mart buys 52 GCR locations S outhern Tire Mart LLC is buying 46 GCR Tires & Service (GCR) stores and six GCR retread plants from Bridgestone Americas Inc. In a joint press release, the companies said the purchase of these locations will allow Southern Tire Mart to serve more customers in markets where it already operates, and expand its footprint to new geographic regions. Founded in 1973, Southern Tire Mart is a provider of commercial truck tires, off-the-road tires and Bandag retreads. e company is based in Columbia, Miss., and operates more than 90 commercial truck tire centers in 10 states. Southern Tire Mart also holds the top spot of our latest list of the top retreaders in the U.S. (see page 38.) "As the largest commercial tire dealer in the U.S., our mission is to provide customers with best-in-class tires and service. To achieve this, we need a strong network of stores that are staffed by experts in the tire and service industry," said Jim and Tom Duff of Southern Tire Mart. "e purchase of these GCR locations allows us to expand our footprint in the southern U.S. while also bringing more knowledge and expertise to our team." e GCR stores and retread plants Southern Tire Mart is purchasing are located in Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, the Florida Panhandle, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, Nevada, Ten- nessee, Texas, Utah and Virginia. ese locations currently serve customers in the commercial trucking, off-the-road and agriculture industries. "At Bridgestone, we continually evaluate and evolve our distribution strategies to ensure we are meeting the needs of fleet customers across our company-owned GCR stores and the independent dealer channel," said Scott Damon, president of the commercial group in the U.S. and Canada for Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations LLC. "We believe partnering with Southern Tire Mart allows us to further strengthen our commercial tire distribution network and position the growth of our brands and fleet solutions." Bridgestone will continue to operate more than 130 GCR stores across the U.S. and Canada. Bridgestone says GCR remains an important part of the com- pany's commercial distribution strategy as a leading provider of commercial tires and service in key geographic markets. But Bridgestone has sold off some of the GCR assets previously. In August 2017 Bridgestone sold six of its GCR locations in the Northeast to another large commercial tire dealer: McCarthy Tire Service Inc. That sale included locations in five markets: Balti- more, Md.; Mount Joy, Pa.; Albany, N.Y.; Binghamton, N.Y.; and Horseheads, N.Y. The GCR Tires & Service stores will transition to the Southern Tire Mart name. The Southern Tire Mart store in Las Vegas, Nev., is pictured.

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