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Champion Window reveals ambitious expansion plans

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Champion Windows, the Cincinnati-based maker of windows and patio rooms, has opened a new showroom in Fredericksburg, Va., its third new site so far in 2011, according to an article in the Cincinnati Business Courier.  

The company now has 80 locations in more than 35 states and nine more in the pipeline;  15 more are planned for 2012. The company’s stated goal is to reach 60% of U.S. households over the next five years to take advantage of national advertising opportunities. Its current coverage is 30%, according to CEO Denny Manes.

Founded in 1953, the privately owned remodeling company installs most of its products and also has a brokerage division that helps customers arrange financing.

Cincinnati and Denver are among the company’s largest markets, according to the article. The company operates factories in Cincinnati, Ohio and Denver. It also sells and installs doors, siding and awnings.

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Industry Dashboard for March 21, 2011

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Unadjusted retail sales for home centers and hardware stores for January show improvement over the same month last year.

Elsewhere on the Dashboard, the housing-starts needle swings in the wrong direction to a pace of 479,000 on a seasonally adjusted annual basis. Single-family starts slip to 375,000, the lowest level since March 2009. 

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Irwin Tools crowns the 2011 Ultimate Tradesman

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Bristol, Tenn. — A carpenter from Halifax, England, outlasted some 16,000 tradesmen to win $10,000 in the finals of a tradesman skills competition held at the Bristol Motor Speedway during race day on Sunday. 

The event was part of a larger campaign by Irwin Tools to elevate and support the often underappreciated tradesman, according to organizers. "Tradesmen keep America running strong, and this is our way of saying thanks for what they do for our country," said Curt Rahilly, VP marketing for Irwin Tools.

Of the 16,000 competitors in the Irwin Ultimate Tradesman Challenge, Dan Shepherd won the event by cutting, gripping, drilling, measuring and sawing faster and more accurately than anyone else. The contest culminated here at the Bristol Motor Speedway on March 20, coinciding with Nascar’s Jeff Byrd 500 race. 

A companion promotion for consumers runs through July 8 and offers people a chance to win a trip to the Bristol Speedway in August — and $1 million if driver Jamie McMurray wins the race — for saying "thanks" to a tradesman through Irwin.com.

The tool manufacturer, a division of Newell Rubbermaid, will also promote a National Tradesemen Day Sept. 16, 2011, Rahilly said. 

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