GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. — Jiffy Lube franchisees Ross and Sean Burton, a father-son partnership, have acquired the assets of nine Big O Tires stores in Colorado from long-time Big O franchisees Rob Curry and Mathew Greco, who have operated the stores since 2015.
The Burtons, who operate seven Jiffy Lube stores in Idaho, have taken over the stores on Colorado's "Western Slope" that Messrs. Curry and Greco — partners in Golden West Tire Centers/Southland Tire in California — bought in 2015 from now-retired Big O franchisees Kevin and Valerie Brooks.
Messrs. Curry and Greco said they will refocus their attention on their 15 Big O stores in California, predominantly in the Los Angeles metro area.
Financial terms of the deal, which closed Aug. 17, were not disclosed. The Colorado stores, in Avon, Basalt, Delta, Frisco, Grand Junction (three locations), Glenwood Springs and Montrose, are all leased properties.
The Burtons — Ross, 66, and Sean, 32 — have formed Western Slope Tire Centers Inc. to oversee the Big O Tires business, according to Ross Burton, who has been a Jiffy Lube franchisee for over 20 years and recently sold his interest in 16 Jiffy Lube stores in Oklahoma to his partner there, Pat Moore.
Sean Burton, who worked for his father and Mr. Moore in Oklahoma, is now a 50-50 partner with his father and serves as president and CEO of the new company. Ross Burton is vice president and CFO.
"We are excited about this opportunity and eager to represent the Big O Tires team building off of all of the wonderful work that Rob, Matthew and their team have done for the community in Colorado," Sean Burton said in a statement provided by TBC.
"We searched for the right partner for a long time; one we know delivers legendary customer service, provides high-quality products at a great value, offers growth opportunities, and has brand recognition in the marketplace, all while being supported by a strong franchise program and we found all of that in the Big O Tires brand."
Ross Burton echoed his son's comments, saying he was impressed by how well Big O Tires treats its franchisees. The Burtons were able to retain all the employees working at the nine stores, Ross Burton said, which helped ease the transition.
Mr. Burton said he was alerted to the stores' being for sale through a business broker. He also cited changes in the Jiffy Lube franchise agreement in recent years that made him re-evaluate that relationship as one reason he was looking for a change.
In addition to the Big O and Jiffy Lube businesses, the Burtons are involved in a car wash enterprise as well, Ross Burton told Tire Business.
John Kairys, vice president and general manager of Big O Tires, said, "Our franchisees are the heart of Big O Tires, our family, and we're looking forward to forging a long partnership with the Burton family as their experience, passion and professionalism truly exemplify The Team You Trust.
"We are confident that this father and son team will be extremely successful," he added, noting that TBC feels the Burton's business and personal core values align perfectly with the Big O brand.