TBC Corp.’s Big O Tires LLC subsidiary has expanded into Minnesota for the first time and added stores in Iowa, Kansas and Missouri. The 44 new Big O Tires stores are owned by franchisee Mark Rhee.
All of Rhee's 44 new stores are former NTB Tire & Service Center locations purchased from TBC. Rhee, who is president of Western Automotive Ventures, also has 12 Big O Tires stores in Nevada. The deal with TBC gives him a total of 56 Big O Tires outlets, which ties him for No. 21 on the Modern Tire Dealer 100 list of largest independent tire dealers in the U.S.
“We’re excited about our expansion and the opportunity to partner with Mark and his team again to bring the team you trust to Minnesota and to serve even more customers in Iowa, Kansas and Missouri,” says John Kairys, vice president and general manager of Big O Tires. “Mark is an exceptional businessman and industry leader and we’re fortunate to expand the brand with him.”
TBC President and CEO Erik Olsen says the agreement “is an exciting way for TBC to leverage an asset that will provide significant growth to Big O Tires and will prove to be beneficial to our associates, consumers, franchises and corporation as a whole for years to come.”
Over the past two years, TBC has opened more than 75 Big O Tires stores and expanded the Big O Tires brand into three new states with both new and existing franchisees, according to Lenny Valentino, vice president of franchise development for TBC.
“The growth of the Big O Tires brand continues as we evaluate opportunities, including multi-unit agreements with franchisees to develop territories over several years that will expand dramatically our footprint and unit counts in the future, all in the best interest of the brand,” he says.
Rhee says his company is “super excited” about its expansion with Big O Tires. “The opportunity to grow our respective companies through this partnership was one that just felt right in all aspects and all of our company family team members and I are looking forward to bringing the Western Automotive Ventures mark of excellence to the people of Minnesota, Iowa, Kansas and Missouri."
The Big O Tires network now extends through 23 states. The TBC Corp. subsidiary has over 400 franchisee-owned and two company-owned stores primarily located in the Western and Midwestern United States.
For more information, visit BigOTires.com.