Toledo, Ill.-based Ben Tire Distributors Ltd. has opened a new distribution center in Joliet, Ill., a Chicago suburb.
The 20,000-square-foot facility will stock Vanderbilt brand tires, according to Ben Tire President Chuck McLuckey, plus other labels like Goodyear, Firestone, Sigma and Multi-Mile.
Ben Tire signed on with TBC Corp. to carry the Vanderbilt line several weeks ago. It is the exclusive Vanderbilt supplier in most of Illinois and Indiana, in addition to "significant areas" of Kentucky.
"Our plans are to expand (the Joliet warehouse) over the next couple of years and bring it up to 45,000 to 50,000 square feet."
The complex, which employs eight people and is managed by Ben Tire veteran F.A. Jenkins, brings Ben Tire's total number of warehouses up to eight; the chain also has 34 retail outlets.
Ben Tire is the 23rd largest independent tire dealership in North America, according to Modern Tire Dealer statistics.
McLuckey says the company will open up to two more retail outlets by the end of 2002.