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Pete's Tire Barns buys out New Haven Tire

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NEW HAVEN, Vt.—Pete's Tire Barns Inc. has expanded its presence in Vermont with the acquisition of New Haven-based New Haven Tire Inc. in a deal that closed Dec. 14.

Pete's Tire Barns President Peter Gerry said the acquisition of New Haven Tire, which was for an undisclosed amount, will allow it to expand the “sales and service of farm, industrial, medium truck, lawn and garden, passenger and light truck markets that New Haven Tire has served so well in the Northern Vermont and upstate New York regions.”

The location, which will take on the Pete's Tire Barns name, will continue to be managed by Neil Allen, who has been running day-to-day operations for the company for more than a year under his father, and previous owner, Burt Allen.

For Neil Allen, selling the business was bittersweet.

“The circumstances (for selling) were personal, and at the same time the economy went down the tank. We were going month-to-month, then it was week-to-week and we had to do something quick before we went down with the ship,” he said. “There just wasn't enough inventory, and bad times and bad things happened, and it was time to either get out all together or have Pete's come in and buy us out.”

Mr. Allen said he believes under its new ownership the business will be able to thrive again, but the biggest advantage for him was being able to retain all of his company's employees.

“I was able to save five other people's jobs by going with Pete's,” he said. “That's huge. I'd hate to take over a company...and have people leave. I wouldn't be able to sleep at night. Knowing they kept everybody—that makes me feel very humbled.”

The New Haven Tire story began with a family dairy farm, of which Burt Allen was the fourth generation owner in 1967 when he started dabbling in farm supplies, including tires. By the late 1970s, he was doing more business in tires than farm supplies. In 1980, he handed over control of the farm to his brother and officially founded the tire business.

New Haven Tire started as a three-car garage, Neil Allen said, but over the years the business expanded, adding a truck shop, two attached warehouses and two outbuildings used for storing snow tires. The dealership primarily specializes in farm tires, but also handles commercial and OTR truck, light truck and passenger tire sales, Mr. Allen said.

In 2013, Pete's Tire Barns will celebrate its 45th year in business.

The company, which was founded in 1968 by Mr. Gerry, operates 20 full-service commercial tire locations throughout New England, a centrally located distribution center, two state-of-the-art Bandag retread plants and an online store.

The dealership employs more than 220 and operates a fleet of approximately 100 service and delivery vehicles.

Pete's Tire's last acquisition took place in early 2012, when it purchased certain assets of the commercial division of VIP Inc., dba Quirk Tire Co., including the dealership's Westborough, Mass., location.
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Previous | Published February 22, 2019

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