WHITEVILLE, NC – The similarities are uncanny. Two family businesses. Two stories that began with a small gas station and a big commitment to exceptional service that led to remarkable success. Today, these two family businesses are one. Black’s Tire & Auto Service has acquired Briggs & Sons Tire.  And with this acquisition, Black’s now operates 31 locations throughout the eastern Carolinas, including tire and service centers, as well as retread plants and wholesale and warehouse facilities.

Ricky Benton began his business in 1975, when he leased a service station in Cerro Gordo from Crowell Black (owner of Black’s Tire Service) and operated the business with his wife, Dianne.  In 1981, Black recognized Benton’s potential and asked him to manage the Black’s Tire store in Whiteville.  In the decades that followed, under Ricky Benton’s management, Black’s Tire grew from a single store to include 18 locations throughout the eastern Carolinas. The Bentons also became partners in the business, gaining sole ownership in 1996.  Today, Black’s Tire Service is still owned and operated by the Benton family, and sons Ricky Jr., Ryan and Jeremy are involved in the management and operation of the business.

In 1972 (against the advice of friends), Bob and Barbara Briggs borrowed money to buy a service station in Clinton. In the years that followed, their family business also expanded. Eleven Briggs & Sons Tire locations in eastern North Carolina (including a retread plant in Clinton) have now joined the Black’s Tire & Auto Service “family,” as Bob and Barbara Briggs pursue their retirement plans.

The two companies share more than their history of growth and success. They also share a firm belief that what makes a company successful is doing all you can to ensure the satisfaction of your customers and your employees. “It is our mission to be the very best place for our customers to buy, and the very best place for our associates to work,” says Ricky Benton.

“When we say that service is our last name, but our first consideration, it’s not just a slogan. It’s a philosophy that guides our business practices every day.”

“I know the people at Black’s share our values,” says Bob Briggs, “and I am confident that customers will continue to benefit from the exceptional service and value they have come to expect from Briggs & Sons Tire.”  Ricky Benton adds, “We look forward to working with Briggs’ employees and to establishing and maintaining a good relationship with the people at the Fayetteville Goodyear plant.”

Black’s Tire & Auto Service offers a range of automotive services and a wide selection of tire product lines including Goodyear, Kelly, Dunlop, Falken, Federal, BF Goodrich, Michelin and Cooper.  They now provide retail and commercial services through the former Briggs & Sons Tire locations in Fayetteville, Raleigh, Clinton, Jacksonville and New Bern, which have joined the Black’s locations in North Carolina (Whiteville, Wilmington, Lumberton, Monroe and Shallotte) and South Carolina (Florence, Myrtle Beach, North Myrtle Beach, Conway, Dillon and Bennettsville).

Black’s Tire also offers commercial services for delivery fleets and trucks, including 24-hour road service and complete retread service.  In addition, they operate a wholesale distribution business (BTS Tire & Wholesale Distributors) and look forward to continued growth with their partners in this segment.  Black’s Tire is also heavily involved in the racing industry, sponsoring a team in the Hooters Pro Cup Series and this year will sponsor a team in the NASCAR Busch Series for a few races.