CHARLESTON, S.C. (April 25, 2014) — Gibson Tire Service Inc. has converted its retread plant in Charleston to Marangoni Tread North America’s Ringtread spliceless and Unitread conventional retread products.
Gibson Tire, a third-generation family-owned dealership, had been a Bandag-licensed retreader for the past 50 years through last November.
“The switch to Marangoni offered us the ability to broaden our market, grow our market share and be more competitive,” President/Owner John Gibson said. Profitability and the ability to be an independent retreader with control over his future were the key drivers that fueled his decision to convert.
This is Marangoni’s first retread plant in South Carolina and 27th nationwide, according to the retread system supplier’s dealer locator.
Mr. Gibson said a key reason for switching retread system suppliers at this time was the product mix: Gibson had relatively little national account business but a signficant amount of intermodal business, owing to the proximity of the ports of Wilmington, N.C., and Charleston.
The restructured retread plant is capable of 260 units a day with two shifts, Mr. Gibson said. The plant is focusing initially on the Unitread process, but will be phasing in the higher value-added Ringtread process steadily, he said.
The dealership employs 35, he said, including 16 in the retread plant.
On the new tire side, Gibson Tire handles primarily the Continental, Sumitomo and Yokohama brands along with some entry-level brands. The dealership is about 95-percent commercial-oriented, Mr. Gibson said, serving customers in a 100-mile radius around Charleston with tires, service and repair and 24/7 roadside service.
Mr. Gibson, grandson of the company’s founder, is the dealership’s sole owner.