Sanford Sigoloff, a turnaround specialist who worked for Wickes and Builders Emporium, died of complications of pneumonia in his home in Brentwood, Calif., on Feb. 19, according to an obituary in the New York Times. He was 80 years old and also suffered from Alzheimer’s disease.
Singoloff, who liked to call himself “Ming the Merciless” after a character in Flash Gordon, was brought in to re-organize Wickes Cos. in 1981 after the company filed Chapter 11. At the time, Wickes Lumber operated 269 pro-oriented yards in 34 states. Wickes Co. also included Builders Emporium, a 63-unit chain.
Wickes eventually sold off its yards in the mid-1990s.
Sigoloff will be best remembered, at least to many in the home improvement industry, for firing Bernie Marcus and Arthur Blank from Handy Dan, a regional home center chain. Soon after, in 1979, the two men established their DIY concept store called The Home Depot.