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MTD exclusive! TCI will focus on 'core businesses'

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MTD exclusive! TCI will focus on 'core businesses'

Now out of retail, Tire Centers LLC (TCI) says it will focus on its core businesses: distribution and commercial tires.

TCI's distribution division operates 77 consumer tire distribution centers throughout the U.S. Its commercial division operates 60 locations.

In this exclusive interview, TCI CEO and President Guy Pekle discusses TCI's plans for both business units. "We will continue to look for opportunities to grow our business and increase our presence in markets where we can serve our customers," he tells www.moderntiredealer.com.

MTD: TCI exited the retail business earlier this year by selling the last of its company-owned retail stores. Why did TCI decide to exit the retail business?

Pekle: Other than those stores, TCI has not been in the retail business for some time now. The agreement to sell the retail stores... provided a great opportunity for us to dedicate 100% of our focus to our core businesses.

MTD: Over the last several years, TCI has worked very hard to expand its distribution network. You now have 77 distribution centers. What percentage of the total U.S. market do you cover? Do you still have any geographic holes in your distribution?

Pekle: We have worked hard to expand our distribution network coverage and our 77 distribution centers cover the vast majority of the U.S. market. Of course, we are always looking for opportunities to expand our coverage and serve our customers.

MTD: Do you have plans to add distribution centers later this year and in 2011? What is the typical size of a TCI distribution center? Do they follow the same basic format?

Pekle: While the distribution centers share common capabilities and systems, they are designed and built with the needs of the market in mind and can be different sizes and configurations. For example, distribution systems serving busier markets may be larger than their counterparts in smaller markets.

The goal of TCI's distribution system, says Pekle, is to "help free up customers' cash flow. We carry a wide breadth and depth of product."

For a full-length version of the interview, see the September issue of MTD, available now!

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