CarMax, Inc., has announced it will open its latest 40,000-square-foot showroom April 17 at I-26 and Piney Grove Road in Columbia. The company now operates 50 showrooms in 24 markets and plans to almost double its size during the next three years. According to David Campbell, a stock analyst who follows CarMax for Davenport & Co. LLC in Richmond, Va., CarMax has no direct competitors and is a used-car dealership with a superstore concept, operating more like a retailer with fixed prices and a large selection. CarMax's profits for fiscal 2004, which ended Feb. 29, were $116.5 million, a 23-percent increase compared to fiscal 2003. The company sold $3.5 billion in used cars in the 2004 fiscal year, a 19-percent increase from 2003. CarMax plans to open 40 new stores through 2007. The company also operates several superstores specializing in new cars. All are in large cities, such as Atlanta and Charlotte. Its superstores in mid-sized markets, such as Greenville or Greensboro, N.C., sell only used cars and light trucks. CarMax says it has sold more than 1 million new and used vehicles since it first opened in Richmond, Va., in 1993.