Creating what company President Paul Weaver termed a more efficient facility, Southern Indiana Tire is relocating its Owensboro, Ky., retreading plant to the company's home base in Princeton, Ind.
A Bandag retread shop will be added to a warehouse built a year ago and should be up and running by early April this year.
The warehouse holds 25,000 passenger and light truck tries, 8,000 medium truck tires and 12,000 farm tires, Mr. Weaver said. The company stocks Bridgestone, Firestone, Mastercraft, Michelin and Goodyear brand tires.
Southern Indiana Tire is building the new retread plant at a cost of $15 million. It will add 20,000 square feet to the 108,000-sq.-ft. building.
The plant will produce 132 medium truck tire retreads per day, Mr. Weaver said, a nearly 50 percent increase over the former facility's output of 90.
The Owensboro shop was housed in a 24,000 sq.-ft. building that also included warehouse space.
The new plant will feature about 10 percent new Bandag equipment, as well as machinery from the former facility. Bandag will disassemble the equipment, haul it to the new site and put it back together.
Southern Indiana Tire operates 20 retail, commercial and wholesale locations in Kentucky, Illinois, Missouri and Indiana.
The addition of the new retread plant has created 15 new jobs, bringing the total workforce at the facility to 40.
The old retreading plant, which had been in operation since 1988, will be sold, Mr. Weaver said.
Kevin Tracy said he was tired of being tired.
More to the point, he had had enough of being awakened in the middle of the night to go pull stranded motorists out of ditches, or jump their dead batteries or do whatever other emergency roadside task that might have been required of him.
That's why Mr. Tracy, along with partner John Higgins, sold a 24-hour diesel business and towing service and opened a Big O Tires Inc. franchised outlet in Fillmore, Utah, about 150 miles south of Salt Lake City.
The 8,000-sq.-ft., six-bay (three drive-through bays) shop was carved out of an old agricultural equipment center, Mr. Tracy said.
The store actually opened late last summer, which turned out to be bad timing: The Sept. 11 disasters and subsequent dip in the economy left business a bit below where Mr. Tracy said he would have liked it. The store does about $20,000 to $35,000 in monthly sales-well short of the $60,000 he said he anticipated.
But that's the price he's paying for now, at least, to have uninterrupted nights of shut-eye, he said.
``You get lots of sleep, but I did make a lot more money (before),'' he said of his old business. ``I think once people know we're here, people will get pretty good about coming in. It's starting to pick back up.''
Mr. Tracy's retail-only store, which employs four, sells the Big O brand, along with Michelin, BF-Goodrich and Cooper tires.
The dealership also handles lawn mower and ATV tires as well as some American Racing wheels.