State-by-state Hardware Store All-Stars: the final four

BY HBSDealer Staff

The final four states on the alphabetical list showcase — Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming — showcase innovative, sophisticated and historic examples of hardware store all-stars. 

• Washington
McLendon Hardware. An active and aggressive user of retail technology systems, Renton, Wash.-based McLendon Hardware consists of six retail hardware stores — including a 117,000-sq.-ft. remodeled former Kmart store purchased in 2004 — a commercial lumberyard, two distribution centers and more than 500 employees. Founded in 1925, the fourth generation of the founder’s family is already in management positions.

• West Virginia
Martin & Jones. Martin & Jones is one of the stops on a historic walking tour of downtown Ronceverte, so tour guides usher groups through the late-1800s store on a regular basis. Meanwhile, employees fetch items for customers from tall wooden shelves using rolling ladders. The three-story building is full of merchandise, including furniture and outdoor power equipment. A much-sought-after small engine repairman runs a shop out back. Up until the 1950s, merchandise came by train right into the store’s basement. Founded in 1904, Martin & Jones is operated by the grandson of one of the original founders.

• Wisconsin
Nelson Agri-Center. This 2009 Golden Hammer Award “Innovative Retailer of the Year” winner is known for its engaging sidewalk and parking lot events. It operates stores in Prairie du Chien and Viroqua, which recently underwent a major remodel.

• Wyoming
Shively Hardware. Lots of hardware stores look like they should be on the National Register of Historic Places, but Shively Hardware actually is. This wood frame structure was built in downtown Saratoga, Wyo., in 1889 and was made into a bank shortly after. The Shively family bought the business in 1925. (It was sold by previous owners to cover gambling debts.) “The store is built around the old bank vault,” said third-generation owner Mike Glode, a True Value dealer with a core assortment of hardware and major appliances. “We couldn’t take it out if we wanted to.” A second store, also called Shively Hardware, sells ATVs, snowmobiles and outdoor power equipment.

To read the original Hardware Store All-Stars story as it appeared in the May issue of Home Channel News, log on or register here.






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House-Hasson announces group insurance program


Independent regional hardware distributor House-Hasson Hardware announced the launching of a new insurance program for its dealers, intended to ameliorate high insurance costs. Made possible by Addison & Associates of Memphis,  Tenn., the program will allow dealers to come together to purchase health and property and casualty insurance as a group. 

“It’s very simple,” said Don Hasson, president of Knoxville, Tenn.-based House-Hasson. “If a group of four has someone who has an expensive illness it’s going to drive up their costs – and possibly cost them their insurance. When you’re part of a larger group the cost ratio tends to go down.”

Responses to the new insurance program have been very positive, with nearly 80 dealer leads at House-Hasson’s Atlanta market held June 23-25, the company said. “We did a soft launch at the market to gauge interest without a lot of hype. We’re very encouraged by the results. We’ll now be informing all our dealers of this program,” said Hasson. 

Dealers look forward to the prospect of lower insurance costs. Terry Garrison, House-Hasson dealer and owner of HomePro of Hartsville in Hartsville, Tenn., expressed optimism about the new insurance program. “This is going to be great. It should lower dealers’ rates,” he said. “We’ve had to go out and shop independently for pricing. To say insurance rates are high is an understatement. For independents, it’s ridiculous.” He added that insurance rates became so high that HomePro of Hartsville was forced to stop supplying insurance for employees, and that he believed many other independent dealers have had to do the same. 

Garrison is not alone in feeling positive about the new program. “We’ve gotten nothing but good comments,” said Hasson. “This is a House-Hasson exclusive and something no one else is doing. We’re always looking for every way we can find to help our dealers be more profitable and successful. Helping them lower their insurance costs is an important way to help make that happen.”



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A.Burma says:
Jan-17-2012 01:17 pm

This is an innovative
This is an innovative concept; it is no wonder that they received great response. This group insurance could be highly beneficial for the dealers. I personally believe that, we should get the necessary insurance covers we need. For example car insurance is something we need to have; but before you get it learn about the insurance company and their cover in detail. Search for reputed and reliable companies like, Car Insurance Ireland, then get their details. If you find it satisfactory then go for it.

R.raj says:
Jan-17-2012 12:29 pm

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We mostly have all kinds of insurance plans. We have home insurance, car insurance etc; but we hardly think about getting a travel insurance. But so many things could happen during your vacation; a good travel insurance plan like Tata AIG Travel Insurance could help you out of any such situation.



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Canadian retailer expands paint recycling program


RONA, the largest Canadian retailer of hardware, renovation, and gardening products, has expanded their in-store paint recovery and recycling program to British Columbia, Saskatchewan, and Alberta. RONA says it’s now the first retailer to collect and recycle old and unused household paints from consumers in Western Canada.

The company launched its paint recovery program in Quebec in 1997, and in Ontario in 2008. With its expansion into Western Canada as of July 4, the program now includes 500 collection sites at RONA and TOTEM Building Supplies stores across the country, where consumers may drop off cans of unwanted home paint. 

Through the paint recovery program, RONA seeks to promote environmental protection by preventing unused paint from being deposited in landfills and waterways. “At RONA, our goal is to help Canadians adopt eco-friendly habits and responsible consumption,” said RONA’s Vice President in Western Canada, Luc Rodier. “We believe the correlation of green consumer habits is closely tied to availability and convenience and know from experience that it is easy for customers to remember to bring their unused paint to our stores when shopping for hardware and home renovation products.” 

In-store collection points will accept all types of home paints, including latex, alkyd, and stains, of any brand. A full list of products accepted for recycling is available at ronaeco.ca. 

RONA takes part in the paint recovery program in cooperation with industry organizations including the Product Care Association (PCA), which manages product stewardship programs for household waste throughout Canada. 

— Allison Har-Zvi




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