Tire Kingdom Inc. started off 2003 with four new stores opening Jan. 1 in three states-including its first outlet in the Charleston, S.C., area-pushing the retail chain's total to about 228 stores.
Besides the Charleston store, Riviera Beach-based TKI opened stores in Marion, Ohio; Tallahassee, Fla.; and Buenaventura, Fla. Bob Patron, director of safety and new store operations, said the four stores follow the mold for TKI stores, which average 6,600 square feet in size with eight bays.
While the Ohio and Florida stores join markets already tapped by TKI, the Charleston store is the first Tire Kingdom outlet in that metro area. Mr. Patron said the company is likely to pursue other South Carolina markets, including the Greenville area.
``It's no secret we've been developing that area,'' he said.
TKI, which is owned by Memphis, Tenn.-based TBC Corp., operates stores in Florida, North and South Carolina, Georgia, Ohio, New Hampshire, Louisiana and Vermont. The outlets carry primarily Michelin, Goodyear, General, BFGoodrich, Pirelli, Uniroyal and Yokohama brands, as well as TBC's Sigma private label tire line.