Natchez, Miss.-based Central Network Retail Group has purchased a 38,000-sq.-ft. Cole's Home Solutions store and drive-through lumberyard in Ripley.
CNRG is a recently organized management and operations group led by Boyden Moore, the former CEO of Marvin's Home Centers, and Jimmy Smith, the current president of Home Hardware Centers.
According to Moore, CNRG’s president, the Ripley store ran into hard times, despite innovative merchandising and strong operations. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
“The Cole family has a great business with stores in Millington and Ripley," Moore said, in a prepared statement. "They are truly innovators in the home center industry. We are proud to have the opportunity to add the Ripley location to our portfolio of stores.” The store will continue to operate under the Cole’s Home Solutions name during a transition period, after which it will be renamed as a Home Hardware Center."
CNRG said it is working to create a multi-format, multi-brand operating company through strategic partnerships and acquisitions. It currently manages the 18 Home Hardware Centers in Mississippi, Louisiana and Tennessee.
"This purchase opens up a new market area for us,” said Jimmy Smith, chairman of CNRG. “It is our goal at CNRG to grow the number of our retail holdings as we move forward. We are constantly exploring opportunities to partner with solid retail operators to expand into new areas and with new retail formats under the right circumstances, and our purchase of the Cole’s facility in Ripley is testament to that.”
The Cole family will continue to own and operate the Cole's Home Solutions store in Millington, Tenn.
On the basis of the ambitious upgrades and merchandising ideas incorporated in the Millington store, Cole's Home Solutions was recognized as the 2010 Golden Hammer Award "Tools of the Trade" honoree. (For a store tour of the Millington, location, click here.)