Peebles firm bought in £50M tyre deal

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Peebles-based online tyre fitters Blackcircles has sold to French giants Michelin Tyres in a £50million deal.

Its acquisition was confirmed by Blackcircles founder Mike Welch, who will secure a multi-million payout from the deal.

He commented: “We have spent some time considering our options for positioning Blackcircles.com for the next phase of growth. In Michelin we have found a partner who shares our passion for customer service, innovation and technology.

“Strategically, it’s business as usual for Blackcircles.com. I expect our team, customers, garages and suppliers to see significant benefits quite quickly.”

He added: “My vision for Blackcircles.com has always been to create a lasting brand that changes the way people buy tyres. With Michelin I see that vision being realised a lot sooner and on a global stage, which is a very exciting prospect.”

The deal also puts cash in the pocket of former Tesco boss Sir Terry Leahy, a major shareholder in Blackcircles.

Blackcircles’ revenue was around £27.8million in 2013 – up 20 per cent on the previous year – and in the first three months of this year it rose by 34 per cent.