LAS VEGAS (Nov. 1, 2011) – Independent Tire Dealers Group L.L.C. (ITDG) and Point S Development of Lyon, France, have agreed to cooperate, bringing the Point S retail concept in use at more than 2,000 stores in Europe to the ITDG membership in the U.S.
ITDG President and CEO Michael Cox and Fabien Bouquet, international operations director for Point S, signed a national franchising agreement today at the Specialty Market Equipment Association Show in Las Vegas.
Among the benefits ITDG members can expect, Mr. Cox said, will be greater collective buying power, a proprietary brand, retail marketing expertise and a more common identity in the marketplace. Under the Point S concept, individual dealers retain their independent identity and add the Point S signage as a secondary identity.
Messrs. Cox and Bouquet have been discussing cooperating for the past three years.
ITDG and Point S share common roots as buying cooperatives, Mr. Cox said. Point S started with 50 dealers in France in 1971; ITDG started with a dozen dealers in Southern California in 1994.
Mr. Cox said details of the plan will be developed more completely in the coming months, but speaking broadly, ITDG's principles and concepts apply mostly to the “back office,” whereas the Point S program brings a wealth of retail expertise to the partnership.
Technically speaking, the agreement grants ITDG the “exclusive and legal representation of the Point S retail concept” for the U.S.
The ITDG membership comprises 350 tire and service locations in 27 states, generating an estimated $900 million in annualized sales.
Point S comprises more than 1,200 independent dealers operating more than 2,000 points of sale in 21 countries throughout Europe. Collectively the members sell more than 12 million tires annually, including about 1 million in its own Summerstar and Winterstar brand, made by Continental A.G.