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Home Depot director nominees include Staples CEO

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Ronald L. Sargent and J. Frank Brown — the CEO of Staples and the dean of an international business school, respectively — have been nominated for election to The Home Depot’s board of directors at the company’s upcoming annual meeting on June 2.

Separately, David H. Batchelder, 61, has informed the Company that he has decided not to stand for re-election at the annual meeting. Batchelder, founder and principal of Relational Investors LLC, has been a director since 2007.

The new nominees offer diverse backgrounds. Sargent, 55, has served as CEO of Staples, Inc., since 2002, and as its chairman since 2005. He served as president and chief operating officer of Staples between 1998 and 2002. Mr. Sargent joined Staples in 1989 as regional vice president, leading the company’s market entry in Ohio, and went on to hold additional leadership roles overseeing Staples’ worldwide operations, retail superstores, delivery business, supply chain and marketing initiatives. Prior to Staples, he held a variety of positions at The Kroger Co. 

Brown, 54, just completed his term as Dean of INSEAD, an international business school with campuses in France, Singapore and Abu Dhabi. Before his appointment as dean in July 2006, he served as a member of its board and as chairman of its U.S. Council. Prior to INSEAD, Mr. Brown spent 26 years at PricewaterhouseCoopers, where he held a series of leadership roles including head of its Assurance and Business Advisory Service, Transactions Services and Corporate Development practices. Most recently, he was the leader of its $3.5 billion Advisory Services operating unit. In June 2011, he will join global growth equity firm General Atlantic LLC as a managing director.

"Frank has strong technical expertise in financial and accounting matters, and Ron possesses extensive global retail and leadership experience. Both individuals would be terrific additions to our board," said Bonnie G. Hill, lead director and chair of the board’s Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee.

 

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A.O. Smith signs on as QSC education sponsor

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Ashland City, Tenn.-based A.O. Smith signed on as the Official Education Sponsor for Quality Service Contractors (QSC). 

QSC is a trade organization serving plumbing and HVAC service and repair contractors.

As sponsor, A. O. Smith will provide many of the tools and resources used to supply contractor education to QSC members throughout the year as well as at the upcoming QSC Power Meeting XXXIV April 7-9 in Nashville, Tenn. A. O. Smith will also provide bi-weekly tech training, QSC HR consulting, and other online resources to contractor members.  

“A. O. Smith stands behind the QSC mission to provide high level business management, education and professional development to its contractor members and their employees,” said Jeff Storie, national manager of contractor marketing for A. O. Smith Water Heaters. “A. O. Smith is proud to support QSC and their contractors any way we can.”

 

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Menards is mum on $5 million land purchase

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Home improvement retailer Menards isn’t saying why it bought the 2.2-acre property next to its store in Richfield, Minn., according to an article in the Minneapolis Star Tribune. But there’s much speculation that the Eau Claire, Wis.-based retailer, which has torn down other stores and rebuilt bigger units, might have the same plans in Richfield, a suburb of the Minneapolis-St. Paul twin cities. 

Menards paid $5 million for the land, which currently holds a Chinese restaurant. A Richfield city official said that the retailer has already expressed an interest in expanding its local store. Last month, Menards opened a teardown/rebuild unit in Eden Prairie, Minn., and the company is getting ready to raze a 128,000-sq.-ft. store in Golden Valley and replace it with a two-story, 250,000-sq.-ft. store, according to the newspaper.

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