VERNON, British Columbia — Kal Tire is now officially a coast-to-coast business with the rebadging of a dozen GCR Tires & Service stores in Canada's Atlantic Provinces it acquired in late 2021 from Bridgestone Canada Inc.
The conversion of the locations in New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Nova Scotia to Kal Tire signage and operating policies extends the Vernon-headquartered dealership's store network to 260-plus locations coast-to-coast.
"We're very focused on helping drivers get safely on their way while ensuring they receive the efficient, reliable and friendly customer service that Kal Tire is known for," Ron Pierce, regional director, Kal Tire, said. "Our operations are designed to get you in and out of the store as quickly as possible."
The dealership's process includes the optional delivery of the customer's own winter or summer tires to the store from storage at Kal's Tire Lodge, a service the company said it was among the first to offer in Canada.
"We're really looking forward to bringing that convenience to drivers in Atlantic Canada and to soon roll out other offerings in the region, including shopping online for tires and an expanded mechanical offering," he said.
After months of operational transition and skills and safety training with 81 employees at the new locations, Kal Tire signage has gone up.
"We're seeing a lot of pride in these team members," Pierce said. "We are so thorough in how we ensure our teams have the training and equipment needed to do their work as safely as possible and we've really invested in the stores with rebranding.
"These locations already had a strong reputation for service, and now with the additional offering by Kal Tire, we're hoping these stores will be a bright spot in these communities the way Kal Tire stores are in the rest of the country."
The revamped locations are in: Antigonish, Bridgewater, Dartmouth, New Minas and Truro, Nova Scotia; Moncton, New Brunswick; and Clarenville, Corner Brook, Grand Falls-Windsor, Paradise, St. John's and Wabush, Newfoundland & Labrador.
Kal Tire's mid-2021 deal with Bridgestone also included three GCR Tires stores in Quebec and Ontario, plus two retread plants and one off-the-road tire repair shop.