NAPA at home at new St. C. site

T-L Photo/ ROBERT A. DEFRANK NAPA Auto and Truck Parts has opened a new location along National Road in St. Clairsville where Aldi’s previously had a store.

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — NAPA Auto Parts has a new home along National Road, but it still offers the accustomed service to motorists.

Kellen McMillen, general manager, said Hill International Trucks is the parent company. It bought locations in Cadiz and Magnolia in 2015. In 2017, the company has purchased two other locations. In February, it purchased a third store in East Liverpool, and in October it purchased a St. Clairsville site. The company then moved to the plaza housing Riesbeck’s Food Mart.

The business moved to the former Aldi site at the end of March. Aldi opened a new location at 68525 Addie Way in 2016. McMillen said the size of the building on National Road fit NAPA’s needs.

“There were different reasons for making the change,” said McMillen. “Our largest store is located in Cadiz, and logistically it make a lot of sense to look into getting the St. Clairsville market. The St. Clairsville market had been a very, very large area for NAPA in the past … We saw a great opportunity with the growth going on in St. Clairsville, the strong base of customers already in there and the new influx we see coming in. Our philosophy of customer service, expanded industry and knowledgeable employees really make a large impact in this market.”

He also said the customer base has been responsive to the move.

“Business has been unbelievable,” said McMillen. “It’s been a steady uptick ever since we took over in October, and the growth we’ve seen over the last month has been unbelievable. Walk-in business has improved.

“Clean, bright, a large inventory, much better parking that what we had when we were located at the Riesbeck’s building at the other side of town,” he said. “The showroom is laid out exactly how we want to. There’s plenty of space for it, to demonstrate our tools and equipment. All the products that we have to offer here. It’s been incredibly well-received by the public.”

The company employs 10 people. McMillen said the top four employees have more than 100 years of combined experience in the NAPA system.

A grand opening event is set for June 15.

The business is at 51660 National Road East. Hours are 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays-Fridays and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays