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Flashlights: Out of the dark

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Amovement to simplify the sales of flashlights has made a breakthrough — the creation of standardized performance measures.

Creators of the new standards — such as light output, runtime and beam distance — say they are light years ahead of the confusing status quo where claims such as 3 million candlepower often sit side-by-side on the shelves with product claiming 40 lumens.

“Consumers and the trade have been left in the dark to figure out the difference between candlepower, candela and lumens, among other inconsistent flashlight claims,” said Peter Nario-Redmond, technical marketing manager for Energizer.

Nario-Redmond was also chairman of the Flashlight Standards Committee, which came up with six icons along with the ANSI standards to effectively shed light on comparisons with apples-to-apples information.

Light output, for instance, is measured in lumens, measuring the light projected from a flashlight. Runtime, in hours, is the duration the light will operate continuously until the light is dim. And Beam distance is the distance in meters, the light projects onto a surface.

Whether the icons boosts sales remains to be seen — but at least customers will know what they’re comparing.

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Armstrong names Thomas Mangas CFO

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Lancaster, Pa.-based Armstrong World Industries announced it has named Thomas Mangas senior VP and CFO, effective Feb. 1.

Mangas most recently served as VP and CFO of the beauty and grooming business of Proctor & Gamble, a $28-billion business.

“We are pleased to have an executive of Tom’s caliber from a world-class company like Procter & Gamble join Armstrong at this exciting time in Armstrong’s history,” said Michael Lockhart, chairman and CEO. “His background and expertise will be important aids to realizing our significant sales growth and margin expansion objectives over the next several years.”

Armstrong World Industries is a leader in design and manufacturing of floors, ceilings and cabinets. The company’s net sales for 2008 were $3.4 billion.

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Around the Web: True Value dealer closes in northern Ohio

BY HBSDEALER Staff

A 20-year-old hardware store in Avon Lake, Ohio succumbed to the economic slowdown, according to news reports.

Avon Lake True Value Hardware, a Northern Ohio dealer that has been in operation since 1988, closed its doors for good a week ago, according to the Morning Journal. The 8,000-sq.-ft. store, located in a small shopping center, originally opened as an Ace Hardware store before converting over to True Value, the newspaper reported.

Avon Lake, a community of 20,000 people on the shores of Lake Erie, is located 15 miles west of Cleveland. The article cited the slow housing market and competitive pressures from Home Depot and Lowe’s as contributing factors in the store’s demise.

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