COLUMBIA, Mo. — Big O Tires franchisee MFA Oil Co. opened stores recently in Sedalia and Lebanon, Mo., expanding its network of Big O Tires outlets to 22 throughout its three-state territory of Arkansas, Missouri and Oklahoma.
The Sedalia store, which features seven automotive service bays, opened Aug. 17 with seven employees with at least two additional staff members expected to be hired, MFA Oil said. Josh Petree is the store's manager.
The store is a greenfield structure located on Missouri Route 50 a few miles west of downtown Sedalia, a town of about 22,000 roughly 85 miles east of Kansas City, Mo.
The company held a grand opening Aug. 28.
The store in Lebanon — a community of 14,500 in south-central Missouri about 50 miles northeast of Springfield, Mo. — opened on May 4. It also is a greenfield construction, but MFA Oil did not say how large it is or how many are employed there.
The company — whose primary business is wholesale distribution of petroleum products through a co-op ownership model — also added a store last year, taking over a franchised location in Warrensburg, Mo., a community of nearly 19,000 in western Missouri about 60 miles east of Kansas City.
Eleven store employees were retained, including manager Damion Smith, Columbia-based MFA Oil said at that time.
MFA Oil did not identify the former franchisee.
These new stores expand MFA Oil's Big O network in Missouri to 16. It also operates three stores each in Arkansas and Oklahoma. MFA Oil also operates eight Jiffy Lube locations throughout Missouri.
MFA Oil did not disclose its investment in either the Sedalia or Lebanon stores or its acquisition of the Warrensburg franchise.
Columbia-based MFA Oil has owned and managed Big O Tires franchise stores since 1998. At 22 stores, MFA Oil is the fifth-largest Big O Tires franchisee and is one of the 50 largest independent tire dealerships in the U.S., according to Tire Business calculations.