CLINTON, Miss. — One new tire business in Mississippi paid homage to another nearby tire business, not only to celebrate their partnership, but also showcase each company's commitment to the Magnolia State.
Continental A.G.'s truck tire plant in Clinton shipped its first tractor-trailer load of tires produced at the plant to Southern Tire Mart, the independent tire dealer that employs more than 1,000 in the state.
The companies said the gesture honored their business relationship while cementing their vow to provide good jobs to Mississippians and stimulate economic development in the region.
Brothers Jim and Thomas Duff founded Columbia, Miss.-based Southern Tire Mart in 2003 by repurchasing from Bandag Inc a handful of commercial tire outlets and retread shops they had sold the retread systems supplier six year earlier.
Today, Southern Tire Mart is the largest independent tire dealerships in the U.S. with revenues of $1.7 billion and more than 140 commercial and retail service locations in 15 states.
Continental staged a ceremonial grand opening last Oct. 16 for its $1.4 billion truck plant in Clinton.
Jim Duff said "the relationship we enjoy with Continental is something we are so proud of, and we are excited to be a part of this new venture that has created and will continue to create jobs for Mississippians for years to come."
Tom Fanning, Continental's vice president of sales and marketing for commercial truck tires in North America, called Southern Tire Mart "a great Mississippi company and long-standing partner.
"Together, we are delivering much more than tires," Mr. Fanning said. "We are delivering jobs and investment to support Clinton and Hinds County, benefiting the entire state of Mississippi along with local businesses like Southern Tire Mart."