MONTREAL — The landscape of the North American wholesale tire business has changed once again, as Montreal-based Groupe Touchette Inc. announced it is acquiring Atlas Tire Wholesale Inc.
The move provides Groupe Touchette, Canada's largest tire distributor, with extended reach, particularly in Ontario, where Atlas operates three distribution centers and has a fourth under construction.
With both companies privately owned, financial details were not released. Groupe Touchette only said it acquired "the totality" of Atlas shares.
Groupe Touchette said that once the acquisition is final, sales revenue should be in the range of $420 million to $500 million annually.
Groupe Touchette will have a workforce of nearly 750 spread among 35 distribution centers in Canada, with a combined storage capacity of 1.7 million square feet. That's a 25-percent increase over what it currently has.
The move coincides with Groupe Touchette's business plan, aimed at accelerating growth in the Canadian distribution market.
Groupe Touchette Co-Owner and CEO Nicolas Touchette called Atlas "a respected major player in Ontario," making it the ideal partner for Groupe Touchette to strengthen its position as a key player in Canada and, more specifically, in Ontario.
Prior to the sale, Groupe Touchette was distributing tires in Ontario under DT Tire and TireLink from five distribution locations, including one in Brampton to serve Greater Toronto.
"In addition to providing an opportunity for increased market coverage, we realized that there was a natural fit and no significant overlap between both companies. With the acquisition of Atlas Tire Wholesale Inc., we are taking an important step in our expansion plan by ensuring a strong presence in Canada's largest market," Mr. Touchette said.
Mississauga, Ontario-based Atlas, a leading Canadian tire distributor that services car dealerships and independent tire retailers, operates six distribution centers, including three in the Greater Toronto area — in Mississauga, Scarborough and Vaughan. Atlas also has two facilities in Alberta (Edmonton and Calgary) and another in Delta, British Columbia.
A fifth Ontario location, an "inventory support center" also located in Vaughan, is expected to be in operation in the spring of 2019. Once opened, the 182,000 sq.-ft. leased facility, which has 24 loading docks and 30-foot high ceilings, will become Groupe Touchette's largest and will give the company 550,000 sq.-ft. of storage capcity in Ontario alone.