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Orgill plans two new distribution centers

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Orgill, the Memphis, Tenn.-based independent distributor of home improvement products, will build two new distribution centers to serve the Midwest and Pacific Northwestern United States.

The company did not specify in which locations the new distribution centers will be, but said “Orgill is in the process of selecting precise locations for the two facilities.”

The Midwestern facility, dubbed the “Mid-America Supercenter,” will be 1 million square feet and is meant to serve Orgill customers throughout the Midwest. It also will act as the company’s system-wide import flow-through center. The new facility will replace the company’s Vandalia, Ill., distribution center.

Byrne Whitehead, executive vp-operations for Orgill, said the Midwestern facility would help “provide us with a consolidated location to process our growing import business” as well as “give us the capacity to accommodate our growth with customers throughout the Midwestern United States.”

The Pacific Northwest facility will help support Orgill’s growing network of retailers in that region, as well as in Alaska and Asia, the company said.

Whitehead said he expects the locations for the DCs will be finalized by the fall and that construction will begin shortly thereafter.

Orgill’s current distribution network includes locations in Memphis; Inwood, W.Va.; Tifton, Ga.; Hurricane, Utah; and Kilgore, Texas.

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Ace lays off 20 corporate employees

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Ace Hardware confirmed Feb. 19 that it has laid off 20 corporate employees from various support areas of the company, effective immediately.

“This action was taken to help bring corporate expenditures in line with Ace’s revised bottom line operating expenses, which is compounded by the continued slowdown of both wholesale and retail sales due to the current soft economy and lackluster housing market,” the Oak Brook, Ill.-based company said in a statement to Home Channel News.

“While we regret that these few select positions were eliminated, it will not impact our ability as a company to service our Ace retailers and, in turn, their customers,” the statement said. Although Ace did not specify which positions had been affected, HCN has learned that some of those laid off were field representatives.

One of the former employees who was informed of his termination on Monday said he was told the cuts were related to the company’s effort to return equity to $320 million, the co-op’s equity level before its $152 million accounting error. Speaking on condition of anonymity, the source said various field representative positions were among the cuts.

The announcement comes six months after Ace discovered the shortfall in its accounting books, which the company recently confirmed was the result of discrepancies between its general ledger and inventory records. Ace made no comment about whether the layoffs were related to the shortfall.

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Standard Lumber opens ‘green’ yard

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Standard Supply and Lumber, a 12-unit chain of lumberyards and showrooms in western Michigan, has announced the opening of a location devoted exclusively to FSC-certified wood products and eco-friendly kitchen and bath products. Located in Grand Valley/Standale, the combination lumberyard/showroom will provide a place where architects, builders, homeowners and others interested in green building projects can source all their products in a single place.

In addition to low-VOC adhesives, composite decking and cabinets and flooring made from sustainable resources, Standard Lumber and Lumber’s “Eco-Connections” will feature Energy Star windows and appliances.

“We are committing our company to the goals of the LEED green building rating system,” said Tim Rottschafer, president of Standard Lumber and grandson of the company founder.

Headquartered in Grand Rapids, Mich., the 104-year-old company also manufactures trusses, constructs post frame buildings, and installs windows, roofing and siding in the residential market.

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