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Menards recalls cordless screwdrivers

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Menards has agreed to the recall of about 42,000 MasterForce 3.6-volt cordless screwdrivers due to an overheating problem.

The product reportedly can overheat and ignite during charging, posing a fire and burn hazard to consumers, due to a lack of overheating protection around the screwdriver’s lithium battery.

There have been three reports of fires and one report of a consumer suffering burns on the hand. Another consumer has reported suffering temporary hearing loss.

The recalled cordless screwdrivers are green and gray in color. They were manufactured in China and sold in Menards stores from Apirl 2007 through May 2008. The screwdrivers retailed for around $30.

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Marine Lumber sold to real estate investment firm

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Marine Lumber, a three-unit chain of hardware stores and home centers headquartered in Nantucket, Mass., has been purchased by Intercontinental Real Estate Corp., according to GlobeSt.com. The Boston-based firm, an SEC-registered investment advisor and real estate operating company, did not disclose the purchase price, but GlobeSt.com, citing an unnamed source, reported it as “roughly $42.5 million.”

Founded in 1944, Maine Lumber operates two Ace hardware stores in Sandwich and South Yarmouth, Mass.; a warehouse in Hyannis, Mass.; and a lumberyard, appliance store, nursery and design center in Nantucket, an island 30 miles off the coast of Cape Cod. Revenues in 2007 were $54 million, according to the Home Channel News Top 500 Scoreboard.

Intercontinental manages a portfolio of more than $1.8 billion worth of property assets, with a focus on real estate investment, development, construction management and asset management.

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Ace Hardware tops another customer service survey

BY HBSDEALER Staff

For the 13th consecutive quarter, Ace Hardware was ranked first in the customer service category by Corporate Research International (CRI), a market research firm specializing in mystery shopping and customer satisfaction surveys.

Ace has ranked at the top of its category since the survey began in April 2005, including for the second quarter of 2008, when Ace earned a 7.96 rating.

Ace was followed in the CRI rankings by True Value and Lowe’s, making up the top three performers in the home improvement category, according to the report.

CRI sends quarterly online opinion polls to its pool of mystery shoppers, who rate their perception of each business’ customer service on a scale from one to 10, with 10 being the highest rating.

Other first-place customer service winners include Chipotle Mexican Grill in the fast food category, Olive Garden in the full-service restaurants category, Speedway in the convenience stores category, Dick’s Sporting Goods in the sporting goods category, Best Buy in the electronics category and Nordstrom in the department stores category.

Founded in 1989 in Findlay, Ohio, CRI was named to the 2005 and 2006 Inc. 500 list of fastest growing private companies.

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