Duke to replace Scott as Wal-Mart CEO
Wal-Mart Stores, ranked third on the HCN Top 500 list of home channel retailers, elected Mike Duke to succeed Lee Scott as president and CEO, effective Feb. 1, 2009. Duke was also elected to the company’s board of directors, effective immediately. Scott will continue serving as chairman of the executive committee of the board.
Eduardo Castro-Wright, president and CEP of Wal-Mart U.S., will now assume the additional role of vice chairman of Wal-Mart Stores, effective immediately. His responsibilities will now include overseeing the company’s global procurement operation.
“This management change occurs at a time of strength and momentum for Wal-Mart,” said Rob Walton, chairman of the Wal-Mart board of directors. “Our overall management team has never been stronger. We are confident that the strategy we have in place is the right one for future success, and Mike has been actively involved in developing and executing this strategy.”
Duke has lead Wal-Mart International since 2005, during which time the business has grown to 3,200 stores and 620,000 associates in 14 markets outside the continental United States. He joined Wal-Mart in 1995. Prior to joining the Bentonville, Ark.-based retail giant, he worked for Federated Department Stores and May Department Stores.
The company indicated that it plans to make an announcement on Duke’s successor as president of Wal-Mart International by the end of the fiscal year.
Three new Ace stores open in Michigan
Oakland County, Mich., has three new Ace Hardware stores, offering a combined 40,000 square feet of retail selling space, according to mlive.com, a Michigan Web site.
Tri-City Ace Hardware in Clawson and Beverly Hills Ace Hardware in Beverly Hills celebrated grand openings Nov. 14 to 16, while Commerce Ace Hardware in Commerce is scheduled to hold its grand opening in April 2009.
Tri-City Ace was opened by Dan Klepp, a longtime Rochester resident who formerly worked in the automotive supply industry. Klepp looked at several entrepreneurial opportunities before zeroing in on an Ace store.
Beverly Hills Ace owner Bill Damman is the grandson of the founder of Damman Hardware, a 17-store Michigan chain that closed in 2004. The Beverly Hills location will employ 15 people.
Commerce Ace Hardware was opened by licensed contractor David Swartz, who previously managed a hardware store and will run the 10-person operation.
All three stores are approximately 13,500 square feet.
The Lumber Yard sells two locations
John H. Myers and Sons, a five-unit pro dealer in South Central Pennsylvania, will acquire the assets of The Lumber Yard locations in York, Pa., and Hagerstown, Md., by Dec. 31, 2008. These operations will be combined with existing Myers facilities in the towns of York and Chambersburg.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Myers also operates lumberyards in Dallastown, Hanover and Camp Hill. The 92-year-old lumberyard ranked in 142nd place in the Home Channel News Top 350 Pro Dealer Scoreboard, with sales of $60 million for 2007.
All 73 employees who worked at The Lumber Yard locations in York and Hagerstown will be offered positions at John H. Myers, according to a company statement. “The continuity of employment for employees and source of supply for our customers were top priorities throughout our discussions,” said Bob Myers III, president of John H. Myers and a fourth generation owner.
Wolf Organization, parent company of The Lumber Yard, is engaged in negotiations to sell the chain’s two remaining locations in Downingtown and Whitehall, Pa. The LBM dealer once served five Mid-Atlantic states with 18 units, but a downsizing in late 2007 cut that number in half. Additional units were closed this year, bringing the number to four.
In a prepared statement, Wolf Organization said it wants to focus its resources on its wholesale business, which distributes cabinets, decking, siding and other building products.