Blaine Ace Hardware opens in Washington
A new Ace store has opened in Bellingham, Wash., in partnership with a farmer’s co-op, according to an article in the Bellingham Herald.
Blaine Ace Hardware opened on July 16 in the International Shopping Center on the site of an Ace Hardware dealer that went out of business last summer. The new 12,200-sq.-ft. store will dedicate 25% of its space to the Whatcom Farmer’s Co-op, which sells feed and farm products, according to the article.
Ace Hardware launches ‘Express’ store format for smaller spaces
Ace Hardware has launched an “Express” format for both current Ace retailers and other business owners seeking to integrate the Ace brand into their existing offerings. The new, more compact stores average 5,000 sq. ft. or less, include customized merchandising displays and stock more than 11,000 of the most popular and profitable hardware products.
“At this time, there are nearly 400 successful Ace Hardware retail locations operating within less than 5,000 sq. ft., and the consistent high performance of these stores proved we had an incredible opportunity to create a specialized, smaller-format Ace retail model,” said Mike Berschauer, director, retail development, Ace Hardware Corp. “Our goal is both to drive incremental store growth for Ace and to mirror the ‘best in class’ offerings available at our larger stores. Essentially we’re providing the same top-notch brands and exceptional customer service, but just in a smaller space.”
The Ace Hardware “Express” format makes it possible for Ace to continue growing share in markets that aren’t able to accommodate additional full-size retail locations and is ideal for the following retail scenarios:
Ace will provide incentives of up to $150,000 to retailers utilizing the “Express” format. In addition, the company has created a variety of tailored resources to support these retailers, including merchandise profile guides, planograms to ensure that product selection is “shoppable” for customers, customized fixtures to create space efficiencies and a variety of incentive programs.
In addition, the in-stock product selection at “Express” format locations will mirror that available in a larger store model.
Currently, there are “Express” format Ace Hardware locations in six states across the United States, including Kansas, Massachusetts, New York, North Dakota, Tennessee and Texas.
Largest independent hardware store holds grand opening
After a soft opening last April, Hartville Hardware held its official grand opening on July 13 and 14, making it the largest independent home center in the country. An article in the Akron Beacon Journal described the seven-acre complex as having 305,000 sq. ft. of retail space on two floors with six different entrances and cash register areas. There is also a three-lane drive-through lumber area.
The Do it Best dealer, which moved from another location, caters to DIYers (60%) and professionals (40%). Overall store sales are up from last year by 29%, according to the article.