How Walmart's Decision to Close 63 Sam's Clubs Will Affect Tire Sales

Bob Ulrich
Posted on January 22, 2018
This chart appears in Modern Tire Dealer's 2018 Facts Issue.
This chart appears in Modern Tire Dealer's 2018 Facts Issue.

Warehouse clubs sell a lot of tires. In 2017 they sold 18.3 million passenger tires, which accounted for 9% of the retail tire sales in the U.S.

They are the third largest retail distribution channel behind independent tire dealers (61.5%), and mass merchandisers (11.5%). They are actually tied with car dealerships at 9% of the market.

They probably won’t be next year. The recent announcement that Wal-Mart Stores Inc. was closing 63 Sam’s Club outlets will impact overall market share.

Here’s the breakdown. Based on the 2017 numbers, the 1,399 warehouse clubs sold close to 18.3 million passenger tires. That’s 13,100 tires per store per year.

Multiply 13,100 by 63 and you get 825,300 tires. Subtract that total from 18.3 million and you get 17.4 million tires. Finally, divide that by the 208.3 million replacement passenger tires sold in 2017 and you get 8.5% market share.

With car dealerships trending upward – they have doubled their market share in the last 10 years – it looks like warehouse clubs will drop to fourth by the end of 2018 (unless, of course, Walmart is not done reducing the number of Sam’s Club outlets, which stands at 597).

With some 825,000 tires up for grabs, who will pick up the slack?

For additional analysis of tire distribution channels in the U.S., check out the digital version of Modern Tire Dealer’s 2018 January Facts Issue.

Related Topics: 2018 Facts Issue, distribution channels, Market share, Sam's Club, Walmart, warehouse clubs

Bob Ulrich Editor
Comments ( 3 )
  • See all comments
  • Craig

     | about 16 days ago

    Well let's see,the customers will hopefully go to Goodyear.com, or to the local Goodyear Tire ans Service Network and get professional tire services. I have fixed many a leaking tire done at the fast tire joints. Quality service and alignment services and properly mounting tires, as well as cleaning the wheels properly before mounting the new ones. Customer care is #1

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