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Castle Harlan agrees to sell Ames True Temper

BY HBSDEALER Staff

New York-based private equity firm Castle Harlan announced it has agreed to sell Ames True Temper to New York-based Griffon Corp. for $542 million.

The acquisition is expected to be finalized later this quarter, according to the release.

“We’ve had a successful partnership with Ames True Temper since we acquired the company in 2004,” said Justin Wender, president of Castle Harlan. “With an exceptionally strong and experienced management team in place, the company is poised to continue its solid growth, and we’re proud to have been a part of its storied history.”

“Ames True Temper is the clear market leader in the outdoor work category, with superb brands, quality products, excellent customer relationships and an outstanding management team,” said Ron Kramer, Griffon’s CEO. “There are immediate growth opportunities for this business both in North America and around the world. Ames True Temper will provide significant initial value to our shareholders, as well as enhance our ability to grow for the long term,” he added.

Based in Camp Hill, Pa., Ames True Temper has been in business since 1774 and is a market leader for long-handled tools, wheelbarrows, snow tools, striking tools and pots and planters.

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Circular of the Week

BY HBSDEALER Staff

This week, the online circular for Weaver’s Ace Hardware of Fleetwood, Pa., is featuring deals in every category. Using the power of the Internet, Weaver’s has broken up the sale categories into separate PDF files so customers can click directly on the category they’re looking for. The online circular also showcases weekly specials, like corn brooms for $6 and contractor trash bags for $7.50. The site also provides previews of upcoming sales.

Hot Deals

• Half off all plants, trees and shrubs with coupon • 4-ft. wooden bench with back for $59.99 • 1 cubic yard of premium-aged hardwood mulch for $29.99

The Skinny: Bonus gift cards

Customers looking to purchase Weber brand grills will get a little extra spice with their purchase: an Ace gift card of either $25 or $50, depending on the price of the grill ($600 and above qualifies consumers for $50). Since no grill is complete without propane tanks and the additional grilling tools and accessories, the gift cards are a sure fire strategy for additional sales.

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New federal law limits formaldehyde in wood products

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Alaw signed by President Obama this month limiting formaldehyde levels in wood is expected to increase prices of cabinets and ready-to-assemble furniture sold in many home improvement stores, according to an article in USA Today.

The new law, which will be phased in over several years, is modeled after a California law limiting formaldehyde content in products made of plywood and particle board. California officials just extended the deadline until Dec. 31, 2011, for stores in that state that sell products that surpass formaldehyde limits.

Formaldehyde, which is used in the manufacture of many building materials as well as inexpensive furniture and cabinets imported from China, is linked to cancer and has long been known to cause respiratory problems.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will decide how the new federal law will be applied at the retail level, including labeling and compliance issues.

Anumber of manufacturers already make formaldehyde-free cabinets and market them as a “green” product.

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