March 1, 2012

Canadian retailer Rona will close 10 of its warehouse-sized stores by the end of the year, shifting its focus to the opening of 25 smaller-format units, the company announced on Feb. 24.

The new focus comes on the heels of a C$151 million loss posted for the company’s fourth quarter, which ended Dec. 25, 2011. This compares with a profit of C$20 million in the same period a year ago.

Net sales for the fourth quarter increased 2.6% to C$1.17 billion. Same-store sales were down 2.3% in the quarter.

November 14, 2011

An article in the Washington Post reported how Lowe’s, Home Depot and other big-box retailers are either pulling out or reconsidering their plans to open stores in the Washington, D.C.-Baltimore area -- leaving plenty of opportunity for future Walmarts.

September 28, 2011

Orchard Supply Hardware has gone through a lot of changes in its 80-year history, but the California chain — now numbering 89 units with $660.7 million in annual sales — has weathered them all. Changes in ownership, leadership, store design, color scheme and signage have come and gone. But the stores’ customers — known for their exceptional loyalty — have generally stuck with the chain. 

August 22, 2011

Do it Best Corp. announced the soft opening of the first four Pongs Do it Best Home Centers in Jakarta, Indonesia, earlier this month.

With the openings in Indonesia, the Fort Wayne, Ind.-based co-op expanded its customer base to 50 countries.

June 17, 2011

The Home Channel News editorial project travels to Oklahoma, Oregon and Pennsylvania to report on hardware store high performers.

June 7, 2011

“Buy from the merchants who are your next-door neighbors. They are the folks who go to church with you, buy from other local firms and keep the money flowing within the community. Your local independent retailer is a longtime resident of the area who actively participates in and generously supports the community.”

That passage was written by a retail store owner, who worried about large competitors encroaching on his turf. The year wasn’t 2011, 2001 or even 1991. 

May 2, 2011

Pet supplies are one of the many non-traditional categories found at Bering’s Hardware in Houston. “People love their animals, and they take good care of them,” Augie Bering Jr. said. “You may not come to Bering’s for pet supplies, but when you walk by our department, you may think, ‘You know, I should pick up something for my dog while I’m here.’”

This is not the only retailer reaching out in ways a traditional hardware store might not. 

Motor oil in Lowe’s. Paper towels in Home Depot. Groceries in Menards. 

March 20, 2011

Richelieu Hardware closed on two more acquisitions, bringing to nine the number of businesses acquired since the beginning of 2010.

The two latest acquisitions involve Madico Distribution, a Canadian distributor of floor protection products, and Provincial Woodproducts.

March 7, 2011

Whether it’s their geographic market, operating strategy or support from lenders and co-ops, there are plenty of variables that distinguish between a retail company that thrives and a retail company that merely survives.

Meet Costello’s Ace Hardware, where a thriving mind-set and aggressive growth are a function of all three variables, and even a few more. 

March 7, 2011

Jeff Schulein of Crown Ace Hardware has accomplished what few dealers can lay claim to: 17 stores, a solid succession plan and, since the economic downturn, no store closures or major employee layoffs. In fact, Schulein and his son, Mark, are in negotiations to open an 18th store, this one in San Diego. 

“I’m an entrepreneur who does things by the seat of his pants,” Jeff said. “Mark is a good manager. He’s highly organized. So together we make a good team.” 

February 26, 2011

Maine Gov. Paul LePage, along with business groups and other supporters, are trying to repeal a 2007 law that requires communities to consider the economic impact of "big-box" stores such as Home Depot, Lowe’s and Walmart before issuing building permits. 

October 19, 2008

When Home Channel News’s list of Top 500 home improvement retailers was published in June,...

October 19, 2008

In a shrinking economy, store footprints appear to be shrinking as well, as retailers, most...

October 9, 2008

Local officials welcomed the development at a recent groundbreaking event, saying it is a move...

October 5, 2008

Bob Taylor could be described as an optimist, a guy who looks at the ongoing...

September 30, 2008

An Olmsted County, Minn., attorney said the group had a shopping list and receipts...

September 21, 2008

At a time when small department stores are losing ground to mass competition, the Hacketts...

September 7, 2008

What a difference a year makes. During Ace Hardware’s dark hours last summer—when it was...

August 24, 2008

A sign on the wall of Big G Ace Hardware bills it as “The Largest...

August 24, 2008

On the Green Bay Packers Radio Network recently—between reports on the dramatic comeback of local...

August 20, 2008

“My Local Hardware Store,” a marketing campaign launched in late July by the Midwest Hardware...

August 13, 2008

Los Angeles City Council has passed a new ordinance that will require home improvement stores...

August 10, 2008

The new 160,000-square-foot Menards store is set for a location west of Detroit, south of...

August 10, 2008

“I saw this as an opportunity to do a smaller, high-margin store with no building...