Private equity firms aren’t new to the tire industry, but there is one that is, and it has plans to rapidly grow its portfolio company, Big Brand Tire & Service in 2022.
That company is San Francisco-based Percheron Capital, which entered into the tire and automotive space after the purchase of Big Brand Tire in March 2021. Over the past year, Big Brand has acquired American Tire Depot, Tire World, Purcell Tire & Service Retail Centers, Integrity Tire, C&R Tire, S&S Tire & Auto Service, 55 Inc., Brian’s Tire and Auto and Community Tire Pros. With these acquisitions, Big Brand is now the eighth-largest tire and service retailer in the US, with more than 160 locations primarily in the southwest under its belt. In 2022, Big Brand is looking to grow even further.
“Big Brand plans to continue to both infill and expand to new markets adjacent to its current footprint,” says Joe Buscaglia, CEO of Big Brand. “[We] expect continued rapid expansion in 2022 through the acquisition of other high-quality tire and service businesses.”
Big Brand’s existing markets include California, Arizona and Colorado.
Percheron isn’t new to the tire industry. In fact, its two co-founders and managing partners, Chris Collins and Chris Lawler, both come from Golden Gate Capital –where they and the firm’s principals had experience helping grow companies such as Mavis Discount Tire, Express Oil Change, Brakes Plus, Pep Boys, ABRA Autobody and Caliber Collision, according to a spokesperson for Percheron.
Collins and Lawler co-founded Percheron in June 2020 after almost a decade with Golden Gate Capital, according to Private Equity Professional. In March 2021, the firm closed its inaugural fund with total capital of $770 million, and Big Brand Tire was its first portfolio company.
According to a Percheron website, the firm manages over $850 million of committed capital and focuses on investing in service businesses in resilient industries. The firm also has investments in veterinary clinics, dermatology offices and car wash businesses.
Percheron says Big Brand Tire was an attractive investment due to its strong reputation for customer service, its dedicated team and collaborative culture and its investment in digital systems that enhance the customer and employee experience. In fact, Big Brand employs a team of software developers and technologists that are constantly evolving the company’s systems to better serve customers and employees, a Percheron spokeperson says.
The firm says it also acquired Big Brand for benefits of scale.
“The tire and service industry is rapidly consolidating and there are significant benefits to achieving scale, such as having the ability to invest in evolving technology and equipment and investing in employee benefits, training and career development programs,” a Percheron spokesperson shared with Tire Review.
As one of the largest tire and service operators in the U.S., Big Brand will continue to expand in growing markets and follow its guiding principles as it continues to add new locations, says Buscaglia.
Those include investing in existing businesses to accelerate their growth; enhancing customer service and culture for its team members; continuing to invest in digital systems and technology; being the employer of choice when it comes to investing in employee and technician growth; growing rapidly and adding more positions (this includes technicians, store managers, district managers, warehouses employees, and corporate team members); and giving back to the communities it serves.
“Entering this next chapter of growth, we have a best-in-class team and the right foundation, built on scalable digital infrastructure, to realize our vision of bringing a strong service culture and leading value proposition to more customers,” Buscaglia says. “I am extremely proud to be part of such a high-caliber business and am thrilled about the opportunities that will be created for all of our team members as we continue to rapidly scale the company through organic growth, acquisitions and greenfield developments.”