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Worthington acquires BernzOmatic

BY HBSDealer Staff

Worthington Industries has acquired BernzOmatic, a manufacturer and marketer of hand-held torches, solder and related items, from Irwin Industrial Tool Co. Specifically, the acquisition was made by the Pressure Cylinders segment of Worthington Industries. BernzOmatic manufactures from locations in Medina, N.Y., and Winston-Salem, N.C. 

The purchase is expected to benefit Worthington by expanding the company’s range of products, as well as contributing to the already established hand-held torch cylinder business of Worthington Cylinders. Additionally, the purchase of BernzOmatic will offer Worthington access to international markets and to the plumbing wholesale channel. Worthington Industries also expects to benefit from BernzOmatic’s strong brand recognition. 

John McConnell, chairman and CEO of Worthington Industries, said: “This acquisition accelerates our growth in the hand torch business with an established retail brand and gives us access to additional international distribution channels.” 

“We can now offer customers the benefit and opportunity to purchase Worthington’s hand torch cylinder and the BernzOmatic hand torch and accessories from the same manufacturer,” said Harry Goussetis, president of Worthington Cylinders. “In addition to its strong brand, BernzOmatic has a history of product innovation. We anticipate enhancing that legacy with our manufacturing capabilities and expertise to grow existing and new product categories.”

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Marvin’s plans store at former Walmart site

BY Ken Clark

Leeds, Ala.-based Marvin’s Building Materials and Home Centers is building a store in Eufaula, Ala. — the 27th store for the home center chain, and the second new store in 2011.

The company opened its 26th store in Monroeville, Ala., earlier this year.

Construction will begin soon at the site on highway 431 in Eufaula, where the company hopes to open a 34,000-sq.-ft. store in early October, or sooner. The site is a former Walmart.

The store will offer a complete line of building materials, electrical, plumbing, paint, millwork, hardware, tools, and lawn and garden products.

“We’ve been working toward the goal of opening a store to serve Eufaula and Barbour County for several years," said Darrin Gilliam, CEO. "The city has been very helpful throughout the process. All the pieces finally came together to make it happen. Our research indicates we will capture a great deal of sales that are currently being served outside of Barbour County."

Marvin’s, which operates mostly in Alabama but also in Mississippi and Georgia, was recognized by Home Channel News as Retailer of the Year in 2010. 

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Readers Respond: Online taxation and a level playing field

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Brick-and-mortar retailers pay taxes. Online retailers often don’t. That scenario along with a recent story about the online taxation debate raging in California led to the following reader comments about the relative fairness of sales tax rules in our increasingly digital world. 

“I do believe that there should be a level playing field, and now is the time, given the state of the economy. Governments are going to have to get more tax revenues somewhere, and this is a relatively reasonable and painless source. I particularly like the fact that it is a tax on consumption — in all ways more fair than a tax on income. The major problem with taxing online sales, of course, is the fact that every governmental entity in the U.S. apparently has a different rate and structure. It would be virtually impossible for an Internet retailer to manage that. As it is, it’s impossible for us to even get it right at the local level, as everywhere we deliver seemingly has a different set of rules and an ever-changing tax rate. My suggestion would be to charge a reasonable, uniform tax determined by the powers that be (perhaps the ICC), regardless of customer location. That would vastly simplify collection/distribution/payment/audit functions, and might even lead to a uniform sales tax structure at the state and municipal levels. That would be a godsend to all of us in the retail business.”
— C.K. Oram

"It is not fair to the people with a major brick-and-mortar investment. We need to have a level playing field."
— Duane Lambrecht

"There should be one average rate per state that can be changed on a uniform date, say July 1 of each year. Internet retailers should remit to one central payment location with electronic info for each state. This would take away many of the problems for small Internet retailers."
— Augustan Kittson

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M.Wiggins says:
Jul-19-2011 03:14 pm

Any and all taxes are paid by
Any and all taxes are paid by the consumer as they are all built into the price of the goods and services we purchase. Therefore, all taxes on businesses should be suspended to increase productivity and reduce the cost of those goods and services making us more competitive in the global community. As for taxing only on consumption, we would be hurting those who need help the most - young families.

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