DUNCAN, S.C. (Aug. 8, 2002) —Tire Centers L.L.C. has bought Reliable Tire Sales Inc. of Baltimore, giving TCI two commercial sales and service outlets along Interstate 95 between Baltimore and Washington D.C. and one more to the northeast of Baltimore.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Reliable Tire employs 80 at its three sites and operates 33 service trucks, including three dedicated to off-the-road service. Sales last year approached $13 million, according to Ray Gordon, president and owner of Reliable Tire.
Mr. Gordon, 60, will continue to manage the outlets under TCI's ownership for one year, then he plans to retire from the tire business and try his hand at writing political commentary. He said he selected TCI's offer from among three he received because it provided the best security for his employees. He said none of his three children is involved in or was interested in taking over the business.
The acquisition helps fill out TCI's distribution footprint along the Eastern Seaboard. The firm has five locations in Virginia, but prior to this deal none between Virginia and Connecticut.
TCI will supply the newly acquired stores with retreads from its own retread plants. The stores are about 20,000 square feet each, with 18 service bays, Mr. Gordon said.
Mr. Gordon's father, Raymond Gordon Sr., started Reliable Tire in the 1940s, opening the first store in downtown Baltimore. It opened two more stores in the 1980s and one more in 1996, then closed the original location shortly thereafter, according to the firm's Web site.
Reliable has been a Michelin dealer for more than two decades. It also handles General tires.
TCI, a wholly owned Michelin North America Inc. subsidiary, operates more than 125 commercial tire centers in 28 states, along with 13 Michelin Retread Technologies Inc. retreading plants.