In an acquisition that will make it the largest auto parts seller in North America, Advance Auto Parts said Wednesday that it would pay $2 billion to buy General Parts International Inc., which owns the Carquest brand.  

Advance Auto Parts , based in Roanoke, Va., said in a statement that the combination of the two firms will result in annual savings and revenue improvements of $160 million within three years of closing the deal.

"This transformational transaction provides a compelling strategic opportunity for Advance to expand our geographic presence and commercial capabilities to better serve customers," Advance Auto Parts Chief Executive Darren Jackson said. 

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Advance Auto Parts will now pick up General Parts International's 1,246 company-operated stores, in addition to 1,418 independently operated Carquest stores.

Combined sales are expected to reach $9.2 billion, the companies said in statement.

Advance Auto Parts also released preliminary earnings figures Wednesday. The company said sales in its third quarter increased 4.3% to $1.52 billion compared with the same period a year earlier.

The sale is expected to close by early 2014. Shares of Advance Auto Parts jumped $13.18, or 16%, Wednesday, reaching $95.68.

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