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Lowe’s names new president of international business

BY Andy Carlo

Lowe's Cos. has appointed Sylvain Prud'homme to the position of president of international business, effective Dec. 15.

Prud'homme will be based in Boucherville, Quebec, and report to Lowe’s chairman, president and CEO Robert Niblock.

As president of Lowe’s international business, Prud'homme will continue to serve as president and CEO of Lowe's Canada and add responsibilities for the retailer’s Mexico business, with the president of Lowe's Mexico now reporting to him.

The appointment follows last month’s news that Richard Maltsbarger is transitioning to COO of the U.S. business in February 2018.

"Sylvain's outstanding operational leadership has been instrumental in growing the company into one of the leading home improvement retailers in Canada," Niblock said. "We continue to be pleased with the integration of RONA and believe we are well positioned for continued success in Canada." 

Niblock added: "Sylvain has more than three decades of experience in the retail industry and we feel confident that he will continue to drive operational excellence for our operations in Canada and Mexico."

Prud'homme joined the retailer as president of Lowe's Canada in 2013. Following the 2016 acquisition of Rona, he was named president and CEO of Lowe's Canada. He is responsible for driving the Canadian home improvement business for Lowe's, including RONA's network of stores and independent dealers operating under other banners.

"I'm honored to lead strong leadership teams in both Canada and Mexico and continue building on the positive momentum and growth in these operations over the past several years," Prud'homme said.

Prior to Lowe's Canada, Prud'homme served as EVP of operations and merchandising for Loblaw Companies Limited. He was also president of western operations for Sobeys Inc. and spent several years as SVP of operations and merchandising for Walmart Canada.

Lowe's, based in Mooresville, N.C., operates or serves more than 2,370 home improvement and hardware stores in the United States, Canada and Mexico.

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Home Depot issues $15 billion stock buyback

BY Andy Carlo

Home Depot’s board of directors has authorized a $15 billion share repurchase program, replacing its previous authorization.

Since 2002 and through the third quarter of fiscal 2017, the Atlanta-based home improvement giant has returned approximately $73 billion of cash to shareholders through repurchases, repurchasing approximately 1.3 billion shares, Home Depot said in a statement issued Wednesday.

Home Depot also reaffirmed its forecast for the remainder of fiscal 2017, saying it expects sales to increase approximately 6.3% for the year, with an increase of comparable store sales of approximately 6.5%. For its most recent third quarter, Home Depot posted sales of $25 billion, up 8.1% from the same quarter last year.

The retailer has also disclosed a long-range, fiscal 2020 target, including total sales ranging from approximately $114.7 billion to approximately $119.8 billion and a compounded annual sales growth rate from the end of fiscal 2017 ranging from approximately 4.5% to approximately 6%. Other goals include an operating margin ranging from approximately 14.4% to 15%, annual capital spending of approximately 2.5% of sales, and a return on invested capital ranging from approximately 36.4% o 39.6%.

At the end of the third quarter, the company operated a total of 2,283 retail stores in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, 10 Canadian provinces and Mexico.

For the first nine months of 2017, Home Depot’s year-to-date sales were $77 billion — up 6.4% from sales of $72.4 billion in the first nine months of 2016. 

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HBSDealer Stock Watch: Reversal of Fortune

BY HBSDealer Staff

The Bears were running on Wall Street Tuesday, as 24 out of 30 hardware and building supply stocks retreated. The decliners included DOOR, down 4.2%; UFPI, down 3.5%; and AWI, down 2.3%.

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