A. O. Smith Corp. names new president
Milwaukee-based A. O. Smith Corp. has named Ajita Rajendra president and chief operating officer, effective Sept 1.
Rajendra will be responsible for A. O. Smith’s water heater operations in North America, China, Europe and India, as well as the company’s water purification business in China. The $1.5 billion business has 17 manufacturing plants around the world and employs approximately 10,000 people.
In addition, Rajendra will be responsible for the Lochinvar global boiler business, once the acquisition of that company is complete. He also will oversee A. O. Smith’s global technology centers focused on research, development and product engineering, and the corporation’s information technology function.
“With his extensive experience, in-depth knowledge of our business and passionate interest in customer satisfaction, Ajita Rajendra is the ideal person to take on this challenging new assignment,” said Paul Jones, chairman and CEO, in making the announcement. “Under his leadership, our Water Products Co. has achieved record sales and profitability. He has been instrumental in growing our market share in China and entering the important India water heater market.”
Jones will remain chairman and CEO and will continue to lead the business transformation to a global water technology company. In addition to operations under Rajendra, Jones will retain responsibility for the corporation’s finance, human resources, legal and corporate development areas.
Rajendra joined A. O. Smith as president of its Water Products Co. in January 2005. He was named an EVP of the corporation in 2006.
House-Hasson makes a splash in the paint aisle
Hardware distributor House-Hasson Hardware added some 2,500 new items to its paint sundries inventory, allowing paint store-within-a-store concepts for its members.
House-Hasson president Don Hasson said an example of the store-within-a-store concept will be set up at the company’s upcoming dealer market, scheduled Sept. 29 to Oct. 1 at the Wilderness Resort in Pigeon Forge, Tenn.
“We’ll construct a small model paint store at the market to show dealers what they can do with these new items,” Hasson said. “A hardware store can sell anything a paint store can sell. Whatever makes it more convenient for customers to shop with our dealers makes our dealers a stronger destination for customers.”
The new products are available out of House-Hasson’s two warehouses, located in Knoxville, Tenn., and Prichard, W.Va.
Cabot Stains and Old Masters are the two largest vendors added to House-Hasson’s product inventory. House-Hasson already carried three complete paint lines: Gray Seal, Valspar and PPG.
Other brands in the paint supplies inventory include Wooster Brush, Purdy, Hyde Tools, Minwax and Tyvek, to a name a few.