Expansions Beverly Group Inc. of Flamborough, Ontario, has opened a new commercial truck tire location in Pickering, Ontario.
The Pickering location is Beverly Tire's 24th outlet. The dealership operates 11 retail, seven commercial and five joint retail/commercial outlets. It also has a retread plant.
This new facility, east of Toronto near Highway 401, continues Beverly Tire's expansion along Ontario's major east-west highway.
Goodyear Canada Inc. has owned a 49-percent stake in Beverly Tire since 1999.
Dunn Tire Corp. in Buffalo, N.Y., has opened two new locations, raising its total store number to 27.
In December, the retail dealership opened a store in Brockport, N.Y., in a strip plaza that also contains a Wal-Mart store.
In January, it opened another location in a renovated building in North Tonawanda, N.Y., near Buffalo.
Chairman Randall Clark said the dealership plans to open five more stores by the end of 2000 to "fill out our existing market area."
In 2001, Dunn Tire will consider expanding beyond its current market area, which straddles the New York State Thruway and incorporates the Buffalo, Rochester and Syracuse markets, he said.
Mr. Clark mentioned southern Ontario as one possible site for future expansion because that area is already receiving lot a of "electronic media spillover" of Dunn Tire advertising on Buffalo radio and TV stations.
Company-wide sales increased 19 percent in 1999, Mr. Clark said, and same-store sales improved 8 to 10 percent. Noting New York's stable population and economy, he said of the sales figures: "We feel good. We must be taking market share from somebody else."
Somerset Tire Service Inc. opened it 69th STS Tire & Auto Center, in Oxford Valley, Pa., Dec. 20.
The new facility was the ninth location opened by the Bound Brook, N.J.-based dealership in 1999.
"The addition of our Oxford Valley site is another important strategic milestone in our quest to become the premier provider of tire and automotive services in the Northeast," STS President Bill Caulin said in a press release.
The new store is STS's third outlet in suburban Bucks County, northeast of Philadelphia. STS reported sales of about $100 million in 1999 and a has a goal of reaching 100 stores.
The Big O Tire stores in Kentucky and Indiana made a special offer to customers during the holiday season—free passenger tire rotation.
Customers who donated at least three cans of food at one of 22 Big O locations in the metro Louisville, Ky., area received the service.
The food was donated to the Dare to Care Food Bank, which serves a 12-county area around Louisville.
The drive started Dec. 5 and was originally scheduled to end Dec. 18. However, the dealers decided to extend it until Dec. 31 due to the great response, said Allen Jones, regional vice president of Big O Tires Inc.
Big O dealers provided about 500 free tire rotations during the first two weeks of the program, Mr. Jones said.
Dare to Care distributed some of the food in Louisville and donated the rest to food banks in Elizabethtown, Ky., and Columbus, Ind.
Dare to Care was founded in 1971 and collected 8 million pounds of food last fiscal year.
Team Tires Plus Ltd. and the Minnesota chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving joined in a cooperative effort during the holiday season to reduce accidents caused by drunk driving.
Tires Plus paid printing costs for 50,000 copies of MADD's "Millennium 2000 Madd Safe Party Guide" and distributed the pamphlets at the dealership's 145 locations in 10 states. The Minnesota state office of MADD updated the national organization's "Safe Party Guide," creating a version of the pamphlet for this program.
The pamphlet includes: suggestions on deterring excessive consumption of alcoholic beverages at holiday parties; a list of myths and facts about drinking and driving; recipes for non-alcoholic party drinks and dealing with drunken guests.
OK Tire Store of Salem, Ore., begins its 61st year in business this year.
OK's president, 46-year-old Randy Sidwell, attributes the dealership's longevity to "our friendly service and just taking care of the customer."
Mr. Sidwell's grandfather, Tim Sidwell, moved to Salem from the family farm in Idaho in 1939 and founded the dealership as an OK Rubber Welders store. Tim's son Carl took over the store in 1944 and moved the business to its present location in 1953.
Carl Sidwell was a member of the OK Tires western region board of directors, Randy said. Randy fondly remembers traveling to Denver with his father at age 14 to attend an OK Tires dealer meeting.
Carl still owns the business, but turned control over to Randy about 10 years ago. Salem's OK Tire has six bays and four employees, is a member of the Michelin Alliance program and is also a direct Dunlop dealer.
Mr. Sidwell still has a few customers who have been coming to OK for tires and service since his grandfather ran the dealership, he said. "If you have a good name, you're going to get customers to come back."
The Gulf Coast Tire Dealers Association has named Al Kochran, a 52-year veteran of the tire business, to its Hall of Fame.
Mr. Kochran owns Southwest Houston Tire Sales Inc. in Houston, which is now operated by his son, Scott, who is president.
Mr. Kochran is only the fourth tire business veteran to be named to the GCTDA hall of fame in that organization's 57-year history. Only one other hall-of-famer is still alive, E.B. Beasley, founder of Beasley Tire in Houston.
GCTDA President Bob Beasley presented the award to Mr. Kochran on Dec. 4.