DISTRIBUTORS/CO-OPS

Lee Cockerell to kick off Do it Best event

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Lee Cockerell, retired executive VP of Walk Disney World will deliver an address on customer service at the Do it Best Fall Market Oct. 19. 

Cockerell’s presentation: “The Customer Rulse … The 39 Essential Rules for Delivering Sensational Service,” will take place at the Do it Best Fall Market Kickoff Breakfast. 

Cockerell will share the service rules he learned at three service organizations: Hilton, Marriott and Disney. 

Pre-registration is required for the $15 per-ticket breakfast event.

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How much credit should be given to the co-op business model for the success of the independent hardware and building supply dealer over the last half century?
DISTRIBUTORS/CO-OPS

Ace repackages private label hardware

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Oak Brook, Ill.-based Ace Hardware has retooled the packaging for its builders hardware department.

According to Cynthia Brasic, Ace brand manager, the new color-coded labels help make the selection process easier for the consumer. It’s the first packaging makeover in the co-op’s builders hardware aisle in about 20 years, she said.

“It’s more user friendly,” Brasic told HCN. “We actually color-coded the packaging so that we make it more shopper friendly. All the bullet points have been updated so that it’s not industry information – its information that will help the consumer make a decision.”

The new packaging has a sustainability angle, too. A trap-blister package replaces a clam-shell package. Brasic says the new packaging will introduce savings of about 8.4 million water bottles per year.

The repackaging is a significant step for Ace’s private label portfolio. Ace has dubbed the program: “Hardware: Unlock the Potential.” The repackaging program has affected about 1,400 skus, Brasic said, and the program is expected to be in full bloom in the first quarter of 2014.

The new packaging was introduced to dealers at the Ace Fall Market in Orlando.

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Hardware Store All-Stars: N.D., S.D. and Minn.

BY HBSDEALER Staff

HCN congratulates the 50 hardware store, home center and farm & ranch retailers who made the annual HCN Hardware Store All-Star list.

Now in its third year, HCN’s annual list of high performers recognizes hardware stores — one from each state — that are outstanding in their field. The complete list and analysis can be found in the September issue of HCN. Meanwhile, HCN Daily will work its way across the country with mini profiles, continuing this week with North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota.

North Dakota: How often do you see a hardware store offering veterinary services? Stockmen’s Supply in West Fargo has been supplying animal health products since 1956, expanding its selection over time to include livestock supplies, animal feed and a farm & home section with the requisite hardware fixings. For the surrounding farm & ranch community, Stockmen’s meets the need for a one-stop shop that’ll hand you your shovel, stock your hay supply and get your horses their shots.

South Dakota: Being all things to all people is a task well-handled by Runnings, which has multiple locations in the Dakotas, Minnesota and Montana. It began as an automotive supply store in 1947 and evolved into a hub for farm & ranch, hunting equipment, housewares, clothing, lawn & garden, pet supplies, guns, sporting goods and standard hardware offerings. Reportedly, at least one of their stores supplies liquor as well.

Minnesota: Frattalone’s Ace Hardware has an extensive presence throughout the Twin Cities metro area, but its Hennepin Ave location in Uptown Minneapolis appears to have a bit of a cult following. Rave reviews of the store’s above-and-beyond customer service paint a portrait of a friendly, helpful staff who’s always there to walk you to the correct aisle, help you cool down on a hot day, hold your hand as you jump over a puddle, or cut open that stubborn packaging for you after you’ve made your purchase.

Next week, HCN will highlight All-Stars in Nebraska, Kansa and Iowa. For the full state-by-state list of HCN Hardware Store All Stars, click here.

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