Les Schwab Will Acquire Plains Tire in Wyoming

July 12, 2021

Les Schwab Tire Centers Inc. has reached an agreement to acquire Plains Tire Co., a nine-store, Wyoming-based chain, from Larry Nicholls. The sale is expected to close in August 2021.

Les Schwab will purchase Plains Tire for an undisclosed sum, according Les Schwab CEO Jack Cuniff.

“We opened our first store in Wyoming in Rock Springs in 2019, with plans to grow our footprint over time," he says. "With this purchase, we are able to serve much of the state in one step.

"Plains Tire is a strong and healthy company and it’s exciting to be able to speed up our growth by welcoming these stores, employees and customers into Les Schwab.”

Nicholls says being part of Les Schwab "will create even more opportunity for our people and I know our employees, customers and communities will be well cared for. I don’t believe I could have found a better partner than Les Schwab to sell our family’s company to and I’m excited to watch these stores grow and flourish.”

Nicholls and his family own Associated Tire Stores Inc., which also does business as Bargain Tire and Discount Tire and Automotive. Those locations are not part of the Les Schwab acquisition.

Les Schwab plans to continue growing organically by opening its own new stores, but also by proactively pursuing other expansion and buy-out opportunities, according to Corey Parks, the Bend, Ore.-based company's chief administrative officer.

Parks leads Les Schwab's expansion and development initiatives.

“Les Schwab is actively looking for opportunities to acquire other great companies like Plains Tire,” he notes.

"We believe we are an outstanding partner for well-run, highly respected tire dealers who want to see their employees, customers and business well taken care of and want to grow together with our company.” 

Les Schwab officials say "no changes will be made immediately for the Plains Tire stores" while they evaluate "how best to integrate the two companies."

Les Schwab itself was acquired by Meritage Group LP, a California-based investment firm, last September. 

Les Schwab is currently the fifth largest independent tire dealership in the U.S. with nearly 445 company-owned stores, according to the 2021 edition of the MTD 100, which will appear in the July edition of MTD.

The company, which was founded by Les Schwab in 1952, operates in Oregon, Wyoming, Washington, Idaho, Montana, California, Nevada, Utah, Colorado and Alaska.

The Plains Tire locations that it is acquiring are located in Laramie, Rock Springs, Gillette, Evanston, Casper, Sheridan, Riverton and Green River, Wyo.