HARDWARE STORES

Owners retire, store closes

BY Ken Clark

The Chicago Daily Herald has reported that Marlowe’s Ace Hardware in Hampshire, Ill., is closing as its owners enter retirement.

Dean and Marge Marlowe have owned the location in downtown Hampshire for 31 years. The State Street store has sold hardware since the 1890s and has been under the ownership of five different families during that time, according to the article

While the Marlowes would prefer to see the business continue as a hardware store, the couple’s three children are not following their parents into the industry.

Efforts to sell the store to prospective buyers have been stymied partly by the banks unwillingness to issue mortgages to the buyers, according to the article. 

The store is expected to close at the end of November.

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N.Pasquine says:
Oct-08-2012 09:11 pm

Isn't this confusing. Buyers
Isn't this confusing. Buyers can't get financing to buy a long established small business.....but Obama said...........add it to the list of his lies.

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HARDWARE STORES

Florida hardware store closing after six decades

BY Brae Canlen

Knotts Hardware, a Tampa, Fla., area hardware store, shut down for good on Oct. 12, according to an article in The Tampa Tribune. Johnny Knotts, whose grandfather Ben founded the store in the 1950s, blamed a poor economy, competition from home improvement chain stores and declining commercial accounts.

The business, located on Main Street in Plant City, Fla., once served commercial customers from phosphate mines and factories. Retail business began to decline as customers moved to suburban shopping centers, Knotts said.

"I feel like I’m letting my grandfather’s dream die,” said the 52-year-old. “For a long time I was in denial. But I had to face the hard truth that it’s time to close."

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Owner disputes impact of big-box competition

BY Ken Clark

It wasn’t a nearby Home Depot that led to the business woes of a Madison, Wis., hardware store, said its owner.

According to an article in the Cap Times, a local hardware store owner pointed to crime and deteriorating conditions in the Madison, Wis., store’s neighborhood as the leading cause for its pending going-out-of-business sale.

Mayor Paul Soglin told the newspaper that competition from Home Depot led to the demise of the neighborhood store.

Deny Lochner, owner of the Meadowood Ace hardware store, sent an email that said: "Mayor Soglin is wrong to state that retail competition put us out of business. Home Depot has been here for 12 to 15 years. Our sales dipped slightly the first year they opened and increased almost every year after that. Our biggest sales years were after they opened!"
 

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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?