BRUSSELS, Belgium — The European Commission has approved the acquisition of automotive workshop chain pitstop.de G.m.b.H. by Bridgestone Europe N.V./A.S. and two German buyers.
The Commission, in a Sept. 1 ruling, said the deal will "raise no competition concerns."
Besides Bridgestone — which had owned a minority share in the Pitstop chain's owner Kulas Holding G.m.b.H. since 2018 — the buyers are identified as HUK-Coburg Autoservice G.m.b.H., a motor vehicle insurance company, and LNN Flug G.m.b.H., a private air charter business, owned by pitstop.de founder Stefan Kulas.
HUK Coburg holds a 25.1% share in Essen, Germany-based pitstop.de. The remaining share ownership breakdown was not disclosed.
Founded in 1970, Pitstop operates roughly 300 shops with 1,400 employees in 200-plus cities throughout Germany. The chain carries several major tire brands, including Bridgestone, Continental, Firestone, Goodyear, Hankook, etc.
Bridgestone bought into Kulas Holding G.m.b.H., the holding company for Pitstop, in 2018 as part of a plan to cooperate closely in sectors of mobility solutions, tire and workshop services to open new markets.
Bridgestone and Pitstop have been long-time partners collaborating on the supply of tires across Europe.
Besides Pitstop, Bridgestone Europe owns and operates Reiff Reifen & Autotechnik G.m.b.H., a German tire retail, wholesale and retreading company with 42 retail stores under the brand labels Reiff, Netto and ABS and a tire retreading plant in southern Germany.