FORT GRATIOT, Mich. (Feb. 7, 2014) — Belle Tire Distributors Inc. opened its 89th retail store, a 10-bay location in Fort Gratiot, over the weekend.
The outlet is the dealership's second in the Port Huron, Mich., area, and the fourth store Belle has opened in the past year. The 10,000-sq.-ft. facility has on-site storage for more than 3,000 tires; two of the 10 service service bays are full alignment pits. These features reflect Belle's standard store design, which it began implementing in 2012.
Belle did not disclose its investment in the new store.
Tire industry and Belle Tire veteran Mark Abbey will manage the new location, moving there from the dealership's Chesterfield, Mich., store.
"I'm looking forward to serving both our American and Canadian customers and bringing Belle Tire's quality of service and tremendous value to Fort Gratiot," Mr. Abbey said, referring to the store's location on Lake Huron near the St. Clair River and the Canadian border.
Belle Tire now offers free air fill-ups at its locations, Mr. Abbey noted, in addition to the range of tire and automotive services. Belle Tire store hours are: Monday and Thursday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
All but four of Belle's 89 retail stores are in Michigan; the other four are in northwest Ohio near the Michigan-Ohio border.
What is the most pressing issue facing your dealership in 2017?
|Finding skilled, qualified workers||
71% (103 votes)
|Competition from online tire sales||
16% (23 votes)
|Managing marketing and social media efforts||
7% (10 votes)
|Upgrading our shop’s technology and equipment||
5% (7 votes)
2% (3 votes)
|Total votes: 146|