HARDWARE STORES

Aubuchon Hardware closes its store in Bangor

BY Ken Clark

An Aubuchon Hardware location in Bangor, Maine, has closed its doors.

A sign on the door of the Aubuchon Hardware store in Bangor explained the team was happy to serve the community. Customers were directed to nearby stores in Brewer and Old Town. 

An article in the Bangor Daily News reported that the location suffered from poor sales despite the chain’s best efforts to keep it going.  

Aubuchon Hardware operates 119 stores in New England and is based in Westminster, Mass. In 2012, the company was recognized by HCN as Retailer of the year during the Golden Hammer Awards ceremony at the National Hardware Show.

The store, formerly a True Value location, was sold to Aubuchon Hardware in 2006.

 

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Rocky’s appoints new VP operations

BY Ken Clark

Springfield, Mass.-based Rocky’s Ace Hardware appointed Bill Madormo to the post of VP operations for the 33-store chain. 

Before coming to Rocky’s, Madormo was VP sales and service at Staples of Framingham, Mass., responsible for P&L and operations for 105 office supply stores. For more than 21 years, and prior to 2000, he held various positions at CVS Caremark culminating in the role of area VP operations. 

"We are very fortunate to be able to bring into our organization such a talented individual with a strong and diverse retail background,” said Rocco Falcone II, president and CEO of Rocky’s. “Bill is sure to quickly become a coveted member of our senior management team.”

Rocky’s stores are located in Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Florida. 

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Handy elaborates on Chapter 11 filing

BY Ken Clark

In a letter to members, Handy Hardware Wholesale said it is not going out of business, but it asked members to show support for Handy during its reorganization and to be patient during the process.     

On Friday afternoon, Handy announced it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in hopes of reorganizing and re-emerging by early summer 2013.

In the more recent newsletter, Handy’s senior director of retail development Lynn Bradley wrote: “There are no plans to liquidate or shut down, and we don’t even see that as an option.”

The industry’s most recent case of a distributor bankruptcy was that of Alabama-based Moore-Handley, which filed for bankruptcy protection in July 2009. It was later acquired by Knoxville, Tenn.-based distributor House-Hasson. The Moore-Handley case is one in which Handy Hardware is well-versed, as Handy’s current president Tommy Schifanella spent six years as CFO of Moore-Handley. 

In the Jan. 15 Handy newsletter, the company pointed to its inability to reach a deal with lender Capital One Bank as a cause of the filing for Chapter 11. “The uncertainty surrounding an unresolved debt obligation to Capital One and trailing financial issues from the Meridian expansion have been holding up progress for Handy and holding back Handy’s ability to assure vendors of timely payment,” it wrote. “The reorganization process now opens the door for Handy to make commitments to vendors for product purchases that Handy can deliver upon.”

Handy is also encouraging members to continue to order, to support the vendors, attend the Spring Market and “be patient.” The newsletter suggested that Handy’s distribution industry competitors will attempt to use the bankruptcy news for their gain, and cautioned against misinformation. “Some of our competitors simply can’t withstand the temptation to declare Handy’s demise,” it said. 

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