Raben Tire Co. Inc. added two facilities to its fold-including its first Goodyear NextTred retreading facility-during the past six months and plans to open a four-bay commercial tire center in April.
The dealership recently acquired a 110,000-sq.-ft. distribution center in Cincinnati from Michel Tire, a part of Morgan Tire & Auto Inc., which in turn is majority controlled by Bridgestone/Firestone. That center services eastern Kentucky, southwest Ohio and central Indiana, according to President Phil Raben.
Last September, Raben Tire acquired a 30,000-sq.-ft. Wingfoot Commercial Systems L.L.C. retread plant and commercial tire center in Clarksville, Ind., but hopes to move that plant into a larger facility. Mr. Raben said the company is looking for a 70,000-sq.-ft. building where the dealership can increase the Clarksville location's retreading capacity to 160 tires per day from its current 90 tires per day.
Raben's other two retread plants-in Scott City, Mo., and Evansville, Ind.-are Bandag Inc. franchised locations. The Scott City plant is scheduled for expansion this year, the company said.
Next month, Raben Tire will open a commercial tire center in Evansville, its 27th commercial store in the seven-state area the dealership serves.
The company increased unit sales of new truck tires by 9 percent last year, leading to a 6.7-percent rise in commercial-related sales, to $44.8 million. Overall sales were up about 8 percent, to $82.2 million, and could rise as much as 20 percent this year, to nearly $100 million, Raben Tire said.