DISTRIBUTORS/CO-OPS

Ace Hardware to move into former Walgreens location

BY Ken Clark

A small chain of Ace Hardware stores in the Midwest plans to add another unit — this one in Duluth, Minn. — by November, according to an article in the Duluth News Tribune

Craig Burggraf and his two brothers, who own Ace hardware stores in Grand Rapids, S.D.; Fosston, Minn.; and Grand Forks, N.D., recently purchased a former Walgreen’s location and are currently remodeling it, the newspaper reported. The 10,500-sq.-ft. building, constructed in 1991, will carry a full hardware assortment, Benjamin Moore paint, Craftsman tools plus a line of Stihl tools.

Downtown Duluth has been without a neighborhood hardware store since 2010, when an Ace Hardware operator closed. Prior to that, Daugherty Hardware closed in 2008.

Burggraf said he’s already been contacted by some former employees of Daugherty Hardware and the downtown Ace Hardware about jobs.

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Farm & ranch category helps Q2 results at True Value

BY HBSDEALER Staff

True Value Co. reported revenue of $536 million for the second quarter, an increase of 1.2% from $529.5 million for the same period a year ago. The Chicago-based co-op posted a quarterly net margin of $22.2 million for the quarter, an increase of 1.8% over $21.8 million one year ago.

For the six-month period ended June 30, True Value reported revenue of $984.2 million, an increase of 0.7% from $977.3 million for the same period a year ago. Comparable-store sales to core domestic hardware store outlets were up 3% in the six-month period. The 2012 year-to-date net margin was $30.3 million, an increase of 1.7% from $29.8 million one year ago.

“Unusual weather patterns in much of the country have had a significant impact on our business,” said president and CEO Lyle Heidemann. “The warm weather in January and February clearly drove down sales of cold- and snow-related products, while the early spring drove earlier shipments in seasonal and lawn and garden product sales, resulting in softer sales in June,”

Two categories that helped boost revenues were the organization’s new farm and ranch assortments, which sold well this year, and paint. “Our new arrangement with Benjamin Moore, as well as strong increases in our own manufactured proprietary paint brand sales, helped offset the decline in winter weather related categories,”  Heidemann added.

"With our support, retailers are continuing to invest in their stores. So far this year, they have implemented about 548,000 sq. ft. of the Destination True Value format, and with the projects currently scheduled for the last half of the year, we expect to achieve our goal of implementing 1 million sq. ft. for this year," Heidemann said.

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In Virginia, Ace opens RDC

BY Ken Clark

Ace Hardware celebrated the grand opening of its new Suffolk Import Redistribution Center (RDC) with an official ribbon-cutting ceremony at the facility in Suffolk, Va.

Representatives from Ace Hardware including chief operating officer John Venhuizen and James Hatcher, board member and Ace retailer, delivered remarks at the grand opening event. Additionally, Linda Johnson, mayor of the City of Suffolk, as well as James Cheng, Secretary of Trade & Commerce for the Commonwealth of Virginia, thanked Ace for selecting Suffolk as the destination for its RDC.

The new 336,000-sq.-ft. facility will receive international goods arriving at the Port of Virginia and then re-distribute them to eight Ace Hardware Retail Support Centers — improving the co-op’s efficiency especially for East Coast retailers, the company said. 

The facility broke ground last June.

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