HARDWARE STORES

True Value reports strong third quarter

BY Ken Clark

True Value Co. reported revenue of $445.7 million for the quarter ending Oct. 1, an increase of 3.6% from $430.2 million for the same period a year ago. The cooperative posted a quarterly net margin of $18.1 million, an increase of 3.4% versus $17.5 million one year ago.

“I am happy with our third-quarter performance,” said president and CEO Lyle Heidemann. "Our members’ retail sales were up 4.1%, with all departments running an increase and all regions of the country performing well. Our core wholesale comp store sales were up 3.1% in the quarter. Both measures were aided by heavy rainfall in the Northeast.”

For the nine-month period, True Value reported revenue of $1.423 billion, an increase of 2.6% from $1.386 billion for the same period a year ago. The 2011 year-to-date net margin was $47.9 million, down 7.5% or $3.9 million, from $51.8 million one year ago.  Lower warehouse sales and higher fuel costs drove the profit reduction.

“Not only are our financial results on plan for the year, strategically, we continue to invest in our retailers’ store remodels and new stores," Heidemann said. "So far this year, 788,000 sq. ft. of retail space has been converted to our recommended retail format, Destination True Value (DTV), up 13.5% from 694,000 sq. ft. at this time last year. Retail sales of DTV format stores continue to exceed all other stores by 9%.”

True Value, headquartered, in Chicago had sales of $1.8 billion in 2010. The True Value cooperative includes approximately 4,700 independent retailer locations worldwide.

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Westlake Ace Hardware offers Zombie Preparedness

BY Ken Clark

Lenexa, Kan.-based Westlake Hardware’s Zombie Preparedness Center makes zombies the centerpiece of a multimedia marketing campaign that’s really aimed at humans. 

The company’s Zombie Preparedness Center has about 15,000 fans on Facebook, and it includes some homemade marketing videos disguised as breaking news about zombie protests and zombie-friendly shopping. 

The campaign’s website allows the user to click on one of two tabs: "I am human" or "Me zombie."

Westlake Ace Hardware operates 88 stores in the Midwest. The company was named the Home Channel News 2011 Retailer of the Year. 

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Century-old hardware store closing

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Moxham Hardware, a 104-year-old hardware in Johnstown, Pa., is closing this December, according to an article in the Daily American. Owner John Cotchen, 83, is retiring. He has owned and operated the store since his father-in-law died in 1984.

Moxham Hardware originally opened in 1907. Liquidation sales have already begun, according to the newspaper. 

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