The company will promote the brand primarily via digital and radio, Mr. Kaner said, and will launch the product with a premium offer — $100 cash card or $150 in Sears Shop Your Way rewards points for the purchase of a set of four. Including the Shop Your Way option is a move to help drive store traffic through Sears stores in general, the executives noted.
The retailer also hopes to leverage its Craftsman brand's title sponsorship of the World of Outlaws dirt-track sprint-car racing series into valuable exposure for the DieHard tire and battery brands, Mr. Kaner said, noting the series has 96 race events scheduled this year.
“We're No. 1 with mechanics with the Craftsman tool line,” he said, “so this goes hand in hand with the DieHard brand and products.”
Sears is targeting owners of mid-range sedans and minivans, such as the Acura 3.2 TL and Integra; Dodge Caravan; Ford Windstar; Honda Accord and Civic; Lincoln Town Car; Mazda 6; Nissan Sentra; Toyota Camry and Corolla.
Sears last launched a new range of tires four years ago when it relaunched the RoadHandler after a 12-year hiatus. For that launch, Sears paired with Hankook Tire Co. Ltd. and brands the line with the “by Hankook” identifier.
Moving forward, Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based Sears is conducting due diligence with “multiple” suppliers for the brand's extension into UHP, SUV/light truck, etc., Mr. Philip said.
Mr. Park added there was “no shortage” of suppliers that wanted to get involved in the DieHard brand launch. Sears green-lighted the project late last year, he said, and together with Kumho brought the product to commercial-ready in just under six months.
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