When Mike Clark, True Value’s senior VP and chief merchandising officer, talks about growth areas, he points to canning, he points to pet food. He points to strength in these warm times, of anything that moves cool air through a house, or moves water around the yard.
But Clark seems most excited about initiatives in farm and ranch.
Research showed that about 500 to 600 True Value members were involved in one or more of the farm and ranch categories. These categories represented about a third of their businesses, on average. But the members were buying their product somewhere else.
“We have 12 DCs,” Clark said. “These are loyal members. That’s why we believe we can develop warehouse programs to allow them to buy in smaller increments. We can competitively price this product.”
In June 2011, increased its SKU count by 200%. The co-op now has more than 10,000 SKUs available in the key areas of farm ranch, which includes specialty pet and automotive products.
The plan includes regional education meetings with members and a farm and ranch retail council, to provide guidance and feedback on assortment and planograms.
The co-op’s story in farm ranch will be on full display at the Fall Market in Salt Lake City Sept. 21-23.