New Opportunity From Sears
Sears Holdings Corp.
announced the launch of a new initiative for the Sears Automotive business—the Independent Sears Auto Center franchise
program. This program offers automobile dealers the opportunity to operate licensed Sears Auto Centers, bringing the
Sears brand, buying power, distribution network, systems and corporate support to automotive aftermarket businesses.
With more than 3,000 new-vehicle dealerships that have lost their franchise, Sears designed the new program to help
those dealers leverage their facilities by establishing a set of businesses around parts and services, over-the-counter merchandise,
and previously-owned vehicle sales. And depending on the franchise contract language, there could be opportunities for
performance parts and accessory companies to supply product as well.
The new Sears Auto
Center franchise locations will provide the same products and services for automobiles, light trucks and motorcycles that
are currently available at the nearly 850 company-owned Sears Auto Centers. Those products and services include:
- An extensive tire selection, including brands such as Michelin®,
Goodyear®, BF Goodrich® and Bridgestone® and more
- Batteries from DieHard®, America's most preferred automotive battery
- Maintenance and repair services for consumer and commercial fleets, including: oil changes, alignments,
shocks, brakes, coolant/antifreeze, air conditioning, transmissions, fuel system cleaning and more
- Custom wheels, car care products, truck boxes, fluids, floor mats, DieHard battery
chargers, DieHard portable power, XCargo® carriers and more
Additionally, many of the new franchise locations will be located on properties adjacent to pre-owned vehicle and
body shop operations, making it even more convenient for customers to service their existing vehicle or shop for a new vehicle.
The new Sears Auto Center franchise model is available immediately to qualified dealers. In
fact, Coleman Auto Group of East Windsor, New Jersey, is the first dealership to take advantage of this opportunity and will
open a Sears Auto Center in March 2010. Coleman Auto Group is utilizing a space formerly dedicated to its Chrysler dealership.Coleman Auto Group of East Windsor, New Jersey, is the first dealership to take advantage of this
opportunity and will open a Sears Auto Center in March 2010. Coleman Auto Group is utilizing a space formerly dedicated to
its Chrysler dealership.
parts and accessories companies that have had limited success selling through new-car dealers this program may provide a second
chance. The new-vehicle franchise dealers have suffered through being shut down by the OEMs and should be prime targets
for marketing from our industry.
Sears Holdings Corporation, Fast Lane Research