PHOENIX (March 8, 2001) — Heafner Tire Group Inc. has found buyers for nine of the 10 Tire Outlet Plus retail stores it operated in the Phoenix metropolitan area, and will seek a buyer for the 10th once it wraps up business details regarding its exit from retailing in the Phoenix area. Heafner started its withdrawal on Feb. 2, when it sold an eight-bay store in Mesa, Ariz., and five undeveloped sites in the Phoenix metro area to Purcell Tire & Rubber Co.
Another buyer is Fletcher´s Tire & Auto Service, which bought one store. In addition, Advanced Auto Service & Tire Center is negotiating to buy two locations. Heafner declined to identify other buyers.
Heafner acquired Tire Outlet Plus in early 1999 as part of its purchase of CPW, but has been unable to build the chain into a strong enough competitor to compete effectively with Discount Tire Co., Purcell, Fletcher´s and others, the company said. Tire Outlet Plus operates under the auspices of Heafner´s Winston Tire division.
The company will continue to serve retail tire dealerships in the area through its CPW wholesaling business, however, according to J. Michael Gaither, executive vice president of Heafner.