DISTRIBUTORS/CO-OPS

In Ohio, Ace builds on distribution

BY HBSDealer Staff

Ace Hardware Corporation plans to expand its distribution center located in West Jefferson, Ohio.

Originally opened in 2014, the upcoming expansion of the West Jefferson RSC — or “Retail Support Center” — will add approximately 309,000 sq. ft. to the existing 534,000-sq.-ft. facility. Construction for the project is expected to begin in the third quarter of 2018 with a target completion in the first quarter of 2019.

“We look forward to breaking ground on the expansion of our West Jefferson Retail Support Center, an integral piece in Ace’s overall supply chain,” said Lori Bossmann, executive VP, chief supply chain officer at Ace Hardware. “Ace’s continued volume growth has driven our need for a larger facility to accommodate our growing business demands.”

The facility in West Jefferson serves Ace Hardware retail locations throughout Ohio, parts of Michigan, eastern Indiana, Kentucky, West Virginia and western Pennsylvania.

Ace runs a supply chain network that includes  14 company-owned RSCs in the United States and three non-Ace RSCs.

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Promotions at PRO Group

Growing responsibility in the marketing and merchandising departments.

BY HBSDealer Staff

The Denver-based PRO Group, Inc. has promoted Alex Hernandez to Associate Merchandise Manager. Hernandez has been with PRO Group since 2014 and was previously Marketing Manager. Drew Eflin has also been promoted to Marketing Manager. Drew started with PRO Group in 2016 as a Marketing and Merchandising Coordinator.

Hernandez’s Merchandise Manager responsibilities include overseeing a long list of categories: apparel, Farm & Ag Supply, Home Hardware, Housewares, Paint & Stain, and Pet Supplies. He will work closely with manufacturers and distributors in the circular advertising process, coordinating special promotions and recruiting new vendors for the group at trade shows and conferences.

Eflin’s Marketing Manager responsibilities include managing and creating content for the company’s web sites and social media platforms and using digital marketing platforms for corporate communication. Additionally, he will be responsible for the PRO Hardware and FARM MART stores programs and will travel to distributor shows to interact with retailers as well as present advertising and marketing programs.

Eflin worked as a marketing assistant for AIM Investment Solutions prior to joining PRO Group.

“Alex and Drew have both been an asset to PRO Group and are valuable members of our team,” said Shari Kalbach, VP of PRO Group, Inc. “I look forward to their continued success at PRO in their new roles as they take on more responsibility and continue to create programs that help the independent distributors and retailers succeed.”

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Ace makes a giant pledge to children’s hospital

A $10 million gift to the Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.

BY HBSDealer Staff

Ace Hardware has a long association with the Children’s Miracle Network of hospitals. Today, the Oak Brook, Ill.-based co-op announced the Ace Hardware Foundation is making one of largest single gifts ever to the Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.

The foundation pledged $10 million over five years.

“Our mission to be the ‘Helpful Place’ means much more to us than merely serving customers, it means making a commitment to help support children and families in our local Ace communities,” said Kane Calamari, president of the Ace Hardware Foundation. “Together with our Chicago area retailers, customers, vendors and corporate employees, Ace Hardware is pledging its support for Lurie Children’s campaign for every child and we hope others in the Chicago business community will join us.”

The gift is the foundation’s largest pledge to an individual hospital. It will help foster Lurie Children’s campaign for every child, which aims to accelerate research and support innovative programs at the hospital and in local communities.

“As one of Lurie Children’s most prominent and enduring corporate partners, Ace Hardware has played an important role in advancing our vision of a healthier future for every child and we’re proud to continue our work together,” said Patrick M. Magoon, President and CEO of Lurie Children’s. “This generous gift will have an immeasurable impact on our institution and the children and families we serve.”

Ace Hardware is committed to support the noble efforts of Lurie Children’s hospital, and the pledge of $10 million over a five-year period will help fund projects in patient care, research and advocacy. In addition, the gift will help support Lurie Children’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorder by funding critical research and specialized fellowship positions in hematology, oncology, neuro-oncology and stem cell transplant. In recognition of this gift, Lurie Children’s will dedicate a newly-developed space on the 17th floor as the Ace Hardware Inpatient Unit at the Lurie Children’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders.

Ace Hardware is one of Lurie Children’s largest and longest standing corporate partners – having raised millions of dollars for Chicago’s kids since the beginning of its partnership with the hospital in 1991. Ace Hardware has also been the hospital’s largest corporate partner for the past two years, raising just over $1.7 million in 2016 and 2017 for a total of over $3.4 million. In addition, Ace Hardware has been a national partner for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals for the last 27 years, raising over $93 million during that time. In 2017 alone, Ace raised $11 million for CMN Hospitals across the country.

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