True Value adjusts pricing strategy
As part of a broad strategic plan, True Value unveiled a new approach to merchandising and pricing during the Chicago-based co-op’s General Session in Denver.
One takeaway: expect fewer opening price points in the True Value assortments. “No one makes money on opening-price-point product,” said Ken Goodgame, True Value’s senior VP and chief merchandise officer.
“Offering a greater assortment of mid-price-point and higher-price-point products helps differentiate us from discount competitors, drives greater value for our customers and increases our retailers’ gross margin dollars,” he said.
Another step is to add regional buyers to improve the relevance of assortment and boost product productivity. The effort will be aided by Geo-Demographic Analysis, a new tool in the True Value box that measures trade-area dynamics.
“Previously, assortment choices were Basic, Expanded and Dominant — or large, medium and small — which ignored geographic requirements for our retailers,” Goodgame said. “So moving forward, we're adding assortments that meet the geographic needs of our consumers.” Among them are urban, suburban and rural assortments fine-tuned to the local markets.
Goodgame pointed to a plan for a four-point pricing strategy consisting of: everyday low pricing for highly sensitive SKUs; buy more and save; compare and save for national brands vs. private label brands; and, where appropriate, “Pro Packs.”
The EDLP portion of the strategy is currently being tested, he said, promising a full update at the co-op’s Spring Reunion.
Goodgame said True Value intends to build on its 2014 performance, which includes year-to-date increases in retail comparable store sales, up almost 4%; and co-op revenue, up 4.7%.
“In 2015, we are going all in and all out to ensure we have a differentiated and relevant merchandising strategy that will improve the quality and quantity of our assortments like never before,” he said.
Ace’s Kaplanis recognized for leadership
Country Ace Hardware owner and VP Amy Kaplanis, a retailer in Granby, Colorado, and member of Ace’s board of directors, appeared in Diversity Journal’s 13th Women Worth Watching report.
The article in Diversity Journal describes her career path from a successful consulting career in Corporate America to a fulfilling role in the family business.
On finding success, she writes: “Above all else, it takes hard work and passion to succeed as the owner of a small business.”
The stated purpose of the Diversity Journal report is to celebrate the achievements and personalities of leading women executives.
D.C.-area hardware store reopens its doors
Washington, D.C.-based Logan Hardware, a member of the nine-store Ace Chain "A Few Cool Hardware Stores," has officially reopened the doors at its new location after months of construction.
Effective Oct. 9, the store was open to customers, though the store is still in the process of completing certain renovations.
The new store features an additional 2,000 sq. ft. of retail space, a new outdoor garden center, a party supplies department, and more products in the pet supplies, housewares, lawn and garden, and live goods aisles. It also has touches of historical detail.
“We converted the old carriage house into our lawn and garden department, and we’ve peeled back some of the plaster to expose the original brick walls," said owner Gina Schaefer. "We are glad we were able to preserve the building and restore it to its original charm."
Logan Hardware staff has been busy inside the store since the last week of September to assist with the move-in process, which includes the stocking of over 20,000 products.
“We are so lucky to have such great support from our customers and we know they are just as anxious as us to see the new store,” said manager Joe Tartaglione. “We’re ready to open, but we apologize in advance for the dust as we finish unpacking.”
The new store is located at 1734 14th St. NW in Washington, D.C.