With a pandemic, an MOT extension and three lockdowns to contend with, describing the last year as “difficult” would be an understatement. Nevertheless, tyre retailers have demonstrated that they are not only key workers essential to keeping the British Isles rolling, but also versatile and resilient businesspeople during the last 12 months. A quick look at the top 25 UK tyre retail chains 2021 table reveals that it has been a more eventful year than normal in terms of branch openings and closings, but overall the clear message is one of consolidation. As a result, the top 25 UK tyre retail chains wield more power than ever. Specifically, the top 25 now run 2528 branches between them. When our coverage of this area began back at the end of the 2008/2009 tax year, the figure was 1978. During the interim, the rough estimate for the total number of tyre retailers national has stayed stable at around 10,000 specialists (that number is roughly double that if you include general garages). This means the top 25 occupy roughly 25 per cent of the number of branches, up 6 percentage points since 2009.
Bridgestone has bought all the shares of ETB. ETB – otherwise known as Exhaust Tyres Batteries and Britannia Tyres – runs 32 different locations, with 265 employees assisting more than 10,000 customers a month. The news follows the sale of Bridgestone’s Kingsway tyre retail business in the East England to Lodge Tyre in September 2017. More widely, Bridgestone has been behind a series of high-profile tyre retail acquisitions across the major European tyre markets.
Both ETB and Britannia Tyres will continue operating under their current identities and with their current team, with founder Charles Ivill continuing to direct operations from the ETB company headquarters in Worcester.
In last year’s ranking of the top tyre retailers in the UK, Tyres & Accessories predicted that the pace of change in the top 20 chains by branch count would result in some jostling for position. This has proved entirely accurate, as two major acquisitions have brought two of 2017’s top 20 into the fold of higher ranked companies, leading to both Micheldever/Protyre, leapfrogging HiQ into fourth place as predicted last year, and Lodge Tyre, into the top 10 from joint-14th last year, making significant jumps in this year’s table. Most other retailers have held relatively stable positions in terms of the number of stores, while our most recent additions to the table, Eden Tyres (15 stores) and Elite Garages (13) were identified as narrowly missing out on places last year.
Kingsway Tyres, which recently became part of the Lodge Tyre Group, is committing significant investment in CAM technologies in addition to its already sizeable participation in the e-jobsheet tablet platform.
The winners of the 2015 Tyre Industry Awards were announced during the 86th NTDA Annual Dinner on 1 October following the new one-day Tyre Industry Conference at the International Convention Centre (ICC), Birmingham. Attendance at the dinner set a new record, with 60 tables sold out. The speaker and presenter of the awards was former England Rugby Union international, amateur dancer and current television pundit, Austin Healey, who added some trademark irreverence to proceedings. The Awards were also live-tweeted as they were announced on the @Tyrepress Twitter feed. The awards were sponsored this year by Sailun Tyres.
Lodge Tyre Company Ltd has opened its 21st depot, with the unveiling on a new branch in Salford. The family run and Birmingham-based business is celebrating its 80th year of trading during 2015.
The new depot, which situated in Lord Byron Square, Salford and close to the M56, M60, M61, M62 and M67 motorway network is located to service Lodge’s expanding business to business customer list as well as its mobile response service. The depot will initially be used as a stocking unit employing three people and managed by long-time Lodge employee Jamie Davies.
CAM has scheduled the second UniSerV User Group (UUG) meeting for April, coinciding with The CV Show at the Birmingham NEC. Chaired by Anne Sherwood, group business support manager of Tructyre Fleet Management, CAM says UUG² will continue to discuss the benefits of e-jobsheet, CAM’s open-access mobile data platform for digital tablet technology in the truck, bus and van service arena.
CAM has hosted the inaugural UniSerV User Group (UUG) meeting, chaired by Anne Sherwood, business support manager of Tructyre Fleet Management. The event took place ahead of the NTDA dinner on Wednesday, 8 October 2014 at Manchester’s Hilton Deansgate. The software provider discussed the latest release of the software with some of its leading customers, using the meeting to identify and plan future developments to benefit the commercial tyre sector.
Celebrating 80 years in 2015, family-run Lodge Tyre is to invest in CAM’s UniServ commercial tyre platform. CAM says the system will allow the tyre operator to capture job information in real time, with links to third party breakdown systems included. The commercial vehicle tyre supplier said the system would help it to continue a recent period of growth. Lodge claims its business has grown 10 per cent per annum for the last 10 years.