Réno-Dépôt: Project guides plus electric car parking
The newest Réno-Dépôt store, the 17th in the RONA division, opened just outside Montreal in Vaudreuil-Dorion, Quebec, last month. The 102,000-sq.-ft. home center catering to contractors and DIYers is an example of Réno-Dépôt’s new-concept format.
Here’s what makes it a new-concept store:
• The company expects the building to be LEED-certified. But more interesting is the energy-responsible parking — spaces near the entrance are reserved for electric cars.
• The central aisle of the store is lined with stores-within-stores — flooring, doors and windows, kitchens and paint. Positioned first relative to the entrance is the storage boutique, described as “an emerging priority for consumers” and carrying items for the garage, kitchen, basement and closets.
• A centrally located “Project Space” — part pro desk, part genius bar — is staffed with “Project Guides” described as experienced advisers to discuss renovation projects. It’s also the place for customers to organize installation services, obtain financing and manage their project.
“This store is one of a new generation for Réno-Dépôt,” said Mario St.-Louis, RONA’s VP retail for Quebec, who described the shopping environment as “enjoyable, customer-friendly and efficient.”
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Simonton moves headquarters to Ohio
Simonton Windows, the vinyl window and patio door manufacturer, has finalized plans to relocate the company’s corporate office to Easton Town Center in Columbus, Ohio. The transition — from Parkersburg, W.Va. — is set to be complete in June 2011. The company is part of the Home and Security business of Fortune Brands Inc.
“We’re extremely pleased to announce the new location of our corporate office,” said Mark Savan, president of Simonton Windows. “This move fully supports our vision of becoming a more consumer-oriented company. The state of Ohio and the city of Columbus have been extremely supportive of our move. We hope to move into the new space in June.”
Located at 3948 Townsfair Way, Simonton’s new corporate office space is on the second floor above retail outlets in the Easton Town Center complex. “This location has exactly what we were seeking,” said Savan. “It has excellent accessibility for our customers and vendors, numerous amenities for our employees and a consumer-products orientation.”
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UGL files for Chapter 11
Dogged by asbestos claims, United Gilsonite Laboratories (UGL) has filed a voluntary petition for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization in a Pennsylvania U.S. district court. The paint and coatings manufacturer is seeking court approval to establish a trust fund to settle outstanding claims and an injunction preventing asbestos-related awards except though the trust.
UGL used asbestos in joint compound but discontinued the practice more than 30 years ago, according to the company.
“In recent years we’ve been burdened with significant asbestos claims that threaten to undermine our strong company,” said Thomas White, president of UGL, in a prepared statement. “This filing is a proactive step to ensure the continued success of UGL for the long-term and we are pleased that there is a clear path to effectively resolve these historic liabilities fully and finally.”
If the court approves the establishment of a trust, UGL and its insurers would create a pool of revenue, and asbestos claimants would petition a committee for payments.
“We will put money in the court-approved trust for asbestos victims in order to win immunity from future lawsuits,” Michele Margotta Neary, UGL’s public relations director, explained to HCN. “Once that trust is funded, UGL will immerge in the free and clear. This will be the only money available to asbestos victims. It is a sound financial decision because at this point, we were fighting claims with no end in sight and with uncertainty of the dollar amount.”
Based in Scranton, Pa., UGL manufactures more than 80 products, including Drylok, a waterproofing and leak-prevention compound, and Zar wood finish.
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