HARDWARE STORES

Rona purchases B.C. plumbing distributor

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Canadian retailer Rona continues its acquisition spree with the purchase of Vancouver-based plumbing distributor MPH Supply and retailer Better Bathrooms, according to a report by The Canadian Press.

Financial terms of the acquisition, made through Rona subsidiary Noble, were not disclosed.

The deal will expand Quebec-based Rona’s presence in Western Canada, where MPH operates five locations in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland. Plumbing retailer Better Bathrooms and MPH generate nearly $15 million in sales and have 50 employees.

Michael Storfer, VP commercial division for Rona, said the acquisition will give Rona instant access to a new geographical area in specialized plumbing markets and offer a new territory for opening additional branches or making more acquisitions.

In October Rona announced its intent to “establish a national platform in the commercial and professional market,” and in recent weeks purchased Don Park LP, an HVAC distributor and manufacturer based in Ontario, and Boiseries Signees, a Quebec-based manufacturer of made-to-measure and prefabricated staircases.

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Rapid True Value launches chainwide remodel

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Rapid True Value, a 12-unit Jamaican dealer, reopened its newly remodeled flagship store in Kingston on Oct. 27, according to the Jamaica-Gleaner.

One of three divisions of Hardware and Lumber, Rapid True Value plans on remodeling other units in partnership with Chicago-based True Value, according to the article. Consumers can expect at least two new products on the store shelves immediately: a premium paint called Painter’s Select, and a new laminated flooring system, Allure. Stores typically measure 6,000 sq. ft.

Rapid True Value’s parent company, GraceKennedy, is in the process of outsourcing its warehousing and distribution, the report said.   

“The tenders are being evaluated now,” said Don Wehby, GraceKennedy group chief operating officer. “We have received four expressions of interest, all from local companies, and we expect a management company to be in place before the end of the financial year. We hope to see significant savings from adopting a similar approach to the outsourcing of this activity as with the management of our distribution center.”

In January, GraceKennedy outsourced the management of its $2 billion distribution center to U.S. transport and logistics company Landstar of Jacksonville, Fla. 

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Around the Web: Black Friday ads leaked

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Walletpop.com, the consumer shopping and finance site, has leaked the contents of Ace Hardware’s Black Friday ad, along with other online sites.

Highlights selected from the ad by WalletPop include Black & Decker cordless drill and bits at 50% off (after a mail-in rebate); a pop-up pet kennel and bed for $9.99 and $7.99, respectively; and tabletop games like air hockey and foosball are $17.99 each.

Other “spoiler” sites that have revealed: Ace’s promotional specials on the Friday after Thanksgiving include Black Friday 2010, which provides links and PDF files of Black Friday flyers for True Value, Harbor Freight, Sears. Kmart, Walmart and Target.

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