Now playing at Ace Hardware: Makers and Grommets

Aiming to discover what’s next, the co-op signs a deal with a new-product platform.

From The Grommet's web site.

Oak Brook, Illinois-based Ace Hardware has a new relationship with The Grommet, allowing local Makers to promote their products in Ace stores.

This partership raises two questions: What’s a Maker? And what’s The Grommet?

The first is an inventor or small business that launches an innovative consumer product through The Grommet, which is a product launch platform and a network of Makers – more than 2,200 Makers. The Grommet slogan is “Discover what’s next.”

Ace will debut its collaboration with The Grommet in select Ace stores this holiday season and extending through 2017.

"For 92 years, Ace has stood for local small business; for the underdog who dukes it out against the Goliaths of corporate America,” said John Venhuizen, president and CEO, Ace Hardware Corporation. “So the partnership with The Grommet not only aligns with the passions of our local owners, but fuels our desire to further Ace as the place for the dreamers, inventors, innovators and Makers. We are proud to stand with The Grommet and their platform for local makers."

For the launch, 20 unique products from The Grommet, sourced from 15 local Makers, will debut in over 160 Ace stores; assortments will be updated each season. Products are unexpected, newly discovered and fit within at least one of 10 core values that are central to The Grommet’s discovery process, including: Made in the USA; Sustainable Living; Made for a Lifetime; Tech & Innovation; Handcrafted; Independent Maker; Social Enterprises; Philanthropy; Underrepresented Entrepreneurs; and Crowd-funded.

The Grommet has discovered and brought to market dozens of now household brand names, including FitBit, Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day and SodaStream. To date, they have launched more than 2,200 innovative consumer products and amassed a community of nearly three million early adopters and supporters.

"Since 2008, our mission at The Grommet has been to launch innovative consumer products and help the small businesses behind them to succeed,” said Jules Pieri, Co-founder & CEO of The Grommet.

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