Goodyear not looking to buy back all HiQs
Following the news that Goodyear has bought one of its largest and longest-established HiQ franchisees, Easy Tyre and Autocentres, Tyrepress got in touch with executives in order to find out more. For example, how much money changed hands? And, considering the latest purchase is the second acquisition of its kind, is Goodyear planning to go full-circle with retail ownership? The short answer is no. But a Goodyear/HiQ spokesperson did say “the acquisition of Easy Tyre and Autocentres further strengthens the competitive advantage of Goodyear and HiQ”, adding:
“If you mean, will we buy all of our HiQ’s back, the answer is no, we are not looking to buy back all of the network. The acquisition of Easy Tyre and Autocentres further strengthens the competitive advantage of Goodyear and HiQ by creating an even stronger value proposition for customers.
“The HiQ franchise network has a number of franchisees operating successful businesses, why change a winning combination? Goodyear continues to envisage HiQ as a franchise network with entrepreneurs at its heart. It is industry best practice for a franchise owner to maintain a share of equity within their franchise network to allow for pilots of new programmes.”
What do know is that the latest acquisition is Goodyear’s second step in its ongoing retail strategy, that Easy Tyre and Autocentres branches will remain part of the HiQ Network, under Goodyear ownership and that this means – together with the Weeting Tyres acquisition that the took place at the same time last year Goodyear now owns 21 branches in its own network. Considering that the overall HiQ network totalled 100 branches, according to our 2018/2019 UK tyre retail ranking, this means Goodyear equity-owned branches represent the largest share of the HiQ network and would be the 15th biggest UK retailer if its branches were counted separately to the rest of the retail network. What this means for the rest of the UK tyre retail landscape is harder to say. And whether or not there will be a third wave of Goodyear-instigated tyre retail acquisitions remains to be seen.