Advance Auto Parts
Advance Auto Parts, Inc. (Advance) is a leading automotive aftermarket parts provider headquartered in Raleigh, N.C., that serves both professional installer and do-it-yourself (DIY) customers. As of April 20, 2019, Advance operated 4,931 stores and 146 Worldpac branches in the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The Company also serves 1,238 independently owned Carquest branded stores across these locations in addition to Mexico, the Bahamas, Turks and Caicos and British Virgin Islands. The company’s stores and branches offer a broad selection of brand name, original equipment manufacturer (OEM) and private label automotive replacement parts, accessories, batteries and maintenance items for domestic and imported cars, vans, sport utility vehicles and light and heavy duty trucks.
Advance Auto Parts in Cairo, Georgia
|Industry||Auto Parts Retail|
|Founded||April 29, 1932|
|Headquarters||Raleigh, North Carolina, U.S.|
Number of locations
|4,966 Advance Stores, 143 Worldpac branches and serves 1,231 independently owned Carquest branded stores (as of 12/29/2018)|
|United States, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Canada|
|Jeffrey C. Smith|
Chair, Board of Directors
Tom Greco (CEO, President)
Jeff Shepherd (CFO)
|Products||Replacement automotive parts & accessories|
|Revenue||US$9.6 Billion (FY 2018)|
|US$604.3 Million (FY 2018)|
|US$424 Million (FY 2018)|
|Total assets||US$9.04 Billion (FY 2018)|
|Total equity||US$3.7 Billion (FY 2018)|
|Owner||Institutional Owners |
Vanguard Group Inc  (10.25%)
BlackRock Fund Advisors  (5.18%)
Barrow, Hanley, Mewhinney & Strauss  (4.47%)
State Street Corp  (4.43%)
Starboard Value LP  (4.36%)
Number of employees
|70,000+  (2018)|
The first major expansion of Advance Auto Parts was in 1998 when the company acquired the remaining operations of Western Auto, an auto parts and general store retailer. Most of the Western Auto operations had been taken over by Sears, Roebuck and Co. in 1987.
In April 2001, Advance Auto Parts acquired Carport Auto Parts, a regional retail chain with 29 stores in Alabama and Mississippi. On November 28, Advance acquired Discount Auto Parts, Inc., a regional auto parts chain with 671 stores in Florida, Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, and Louisiana. Upon completion of this merger, Advance Auto Parts became a publicly traded company, listed as a common stock on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol AAP. The year ended with 2,484 stores in 38 states.
In September 2006, Advance Auto Parts (NYSE:AAP) announced an agreement with ADMMicro, a VA-based company, to retrofit certain existing stores and equip new stores with an Energy Management System (EMS).
In December 2012, Advance Auto Parts acquired BWP Distributors, a Carquest franchise for the New England region that included the transfer of 124 company owned retail locations plus 2 distribution centers. The responsibility for 92 independently owned location that were service by BWP were transferred to General Parts, Inc., the largest Carquest franchise along with one distribution center for servicing those locations.
On October 16, 2013, Advance Auto Parts entered into a definitive agreement to acquire General Parts International, Inc. (GPI), a leading privately held distributor and supplier of original equipment and aftermarket replacement products for commercial markets operating under the CARQUEST and WORLDPAC brands. The deal created the largest automotive aftermarket parts provider in North America.
General Parts International, with corporate headquarters in Raleigh, NC, has seen a significant rise in personnel since being acquired by Advance. Most of these added jobs are personnel from Roanoke, Minnesota or between the now redundant GPI positions being transferred to Raleigh.
In 2014 Advance Auto Parts began a Loyalty Program for "Do-It-Yourself" retail customers, named SpeedPerks. By enrolling in the loyalty program, the member will receive discounts off of purchases without the need of a card or point system.
On September 30, 2015, Starboard Value LP, an activist investment firm disclosed a 3.7 percent stake in Advance Auto Parts. Through a letter to Chief Executive Darren Jackson and a keynote presentation published on Starboard's website, Starboard Values believes that Advance Auto Parts shares have the potential to reach $350 each if the company takes steps to improve profit margins. The presentation also stated that "Advance Auto Parts has substantially underperformed compared to peers on almost any measure, including operating margins, revenue growth, and total shareholder return."  Roanoke, Virginia-based Advance Auto's sales have missed market expectations in four of the past six quarters. Starboard Value LP was behind the ouster of the entire board of restaurant operator Darden Restaurants Inc last year, owners of the Red Lobster/Olive Garden restaurants. Effective January 2, 2016, Darren Jackson elected to resign his position as CEO. On April 4, 2016, Advance announced Frito-Lay North America CEO Tom Greco would succeed Jackson as CEO. While Advance stock declined throughout 2016 and 2017, the stock has seen a strong recovery as the company’s five-year transformation plan progresses. In 2018, Advance was the #4 top performing stock of the S&P 500 outperforming the aftermarket automotive parts industry by more than 30 percent.
In October 2018, Advance and Walmart announced a strategic omnichannel partnership that will create an automotive specialty store on Walmart.com. Expected to begin rolling out in the first half of 2019, the new omnichannel experience will provide customers with access to Advance’s extensive portfolio of aftermarket automotive parts, accessories and maintenance items. The companies also plan to work together to explore new fulfillment options that will bring customers unparalleled convenience, including home delivery, same-day pickup in a Walmart or Advance store and installation of some parts.
In November 2018, Advance Auto Parts announced the relocation of its headquarters from Roanoke, VA to Raleigh, NC. The state of North Carolina and Advance Auto Parts agreed on a $12 million incentive package for this relocation.
In December 2018, Advance published its inaugural Corporate Sustainability and Social Report outlining its corporate sustainability and social goals focusing on several key areas including People, Planet, and Community. 
People: Advance says that its Team Members are the best parts people in the business. Ultimately, it is their Team Members’ knowledge, dedication and focus that sets Advance apart from its competitors.
Planet: The company’s Environmental, Health and Safety Policy details how the company is developing and sustaining a work environment that promotes inclusion and focuses on the health, safety, and environmental well-being of its Team Members and business partners.
Community: Advance’s charitable and community engagement efforts fall under its Advance Cares program. The company focuses its charitable efforts through support of three impact areas: Health, Disaster Relief, Military and Civilians in Need.
Inclusion and diversityEdit
Advance embraces diversity across all dimensions and supports an inclusive environment through its Inclusion & Diversity efforts. Advance has embedded Inclusion & Diversity in its company strategy, and has focused on recruiting and retaining a diverse workforce.
As part of its Inclusion & Diversity efforts, Advance has nine Team Member networks. Team Member Networks are open to anyone and enable Team Members with similar backgrounds, experiences and interests to come together with a common goal. The nine Team Member Networks include:
- Advance Pride & Allies
- F.U.E.G.O. Latino (Fostering Unity, Engagement, Growth and Opportunities
- Knowledge Network
- S.E.R.V.I.C.E. (Service, Educate, Recruit, Value, Inspire, Celebrate and Empower)
- W.I.M.N. (Women in Motion Network)
- ADA (Advance for Different Abilities)
- I.C.O.N. (International Cultural Opportunities Network)
- A.L.I.G.N. (African Americans Leading Inclusion and Growth Network)
In 2018, the Triangle Business Journal, recognized Advance with a “Leaders in Diversity” award. This award recognized of the impact of Advance’s strategic focus on Inclusion & Diversity and the culture Advance embodies.
From 2009 to 2013, Advance Auto Parts was a title sponsor of Monster Jam and sponsored a truck on the circuit called the Advance Auto Parts Grinder. Advance Auto Parts has also served as a sponsor in NASCAR, including Alex Bowman's cars in 2015 and 2016 with Tommy Baldwin Racing and JR Motorsports, respectively. In 2017, Advance Auto Parts became the title sponsor of the Advance Auto Parts Clash exhibition race at Daytona International Speedway.
In December 2016, it was announced that Advance would be the primary sponsor of NHRA Funny Car driver Courtney Force, the winningest female Funny Car driver in the history. The multi-year sponsorship began with the 2017 Circle K NHRA Winternationals in Pomona, Calif., and ran through the entire 2017 and 2018 seasons.  Courtney Force announced she was stepping away from drag racing in January 2019 and later it was announced that her sister, Brittany Force, and her Top Fuel dragster would be sponsored by Advance for the 2019 NHRA season.
Advance premiered on the Fortune 500 list of companies in 2003 at No. 466 and has remained on the list since that time, including ranking No. 326 on the 2019 list . The company premiered on the Fortune 500 list of companies in 2003 at No. 466 and has remained on the list since that time. As of June 2014, it was ranked at No. 1,412 on the Forbes magazine "World's Biggest Public Companies" list. Soon after, Advance Auto Parts was bumped to 2nd largest automotive aftermarket retailer by competitor, AutoZone, and has held that that position as of July 2018.
Advance has received recognition for charitable contributions. The company has been named an "elite partner" for its fundraising for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), having donated more than $42 million since 1994. Advance acts as an aggregator for the largest portion of the donations for JDRF, collecting monies from both walk-in customers and commercial business through the sale of paper sneakers, that once purchased by the customer are displayed on the store windows.
In January 2005, Advanced was named the “Best Managed Company in America” in the retail sector by Forbes magazine. This recognition was part of the annual Forbes Platinum 400 list of top-performing big corporations. The best-managed companies are those businesses that top the rankings in 26 different industries.
In November 2018, Advance and its President and CEO Tom Greco, were honored by Building Homes for Heroes at its 8th Annual Honoree Dinner for the work both have done for the organization. Advance has helped raise more than $11 million for Building Homes for Heroes since 2011.
In 2018, Advance began supporting the American Heart Association with a special company-wide, point-of-sale campaign and HeartWalk participation in North Carolina and Virginia. Tom Greco, President and CEO, served as the Walk Chair for the 2018 Triangle Heart Walk. The Walk had a record year, raising almost $2 million. Through engagement with its stores nationally and local walk team fundraising, Advance raised $500,000 for the American Heart Association in 2018.
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