Throwback Thursday

Throwback Thursday: Brooklyn Strong

In 1997, A spirit of optimism lifted the Strober Organization

BY HBSDealer Staff

The Oct. 6, 1997 issue of National Home Center News, the forerunner of HBSDealer, chronicled the “Road to Success” of The Strober Organization, the high-powered, 11-yard, Brooklyn, N.Y.-based pro dealer.

The article quoted Frederick Marino, who had recently taken on the post of chairman and CEO. “Our goal is to be the dominant supplier of building materials to professional contractors in the Northeast U.S. And we’ll accomplish that through a series of start-ups and acquisitions.”

The company’s plan was to acquire independents. His pitch was described as if it were plucked out of today’s business press. “If independents become part of Strober, they will run as subsidiaries of a holding company,” the article stated. “They’ll be given incentives … and improved purchasing powers and a ‘toolbox marketing approach that they can use in their own markets.’”

Through this type of expansion, Strober became one of the biggest pro dealers in the country by 2005. Along with Lanoga, the Strober brand rolled into the ProBuild banner in a blockbuster merger of 2006.  Then in 2015, ProBuild was acquired by Builders FirstSource.

# # #

Did your career overlap the Strober-ProBuild deal? Let us know your impressions here.


HBSDealer’s Throwback Thursday is sponsored by Schaffer Associates, a national management consulting firm specializing in executive search and organizational strategies for the hardware, home improvement, building materials, and consumer products industries. As the premier management consulting firm serving the industry, we help build organizations and leadership teams that foster corporate growth and success well into the future. Contact us at SchafferAssociates.com

keyboard_arrow_downCOMMENTS

Leave a Reply

No comments found

TRENDING STORIES

POLLS

What product category represents the best opportunity for growth in 2019?
Throwback Thursday

Throwback Thursday: The Paint People of New Jersey

A 1995 snapshot of Ricciardi Bros, just before an explosion of growth.

BY HBSDealer Staff

The Oct. 9, 1995 issue of National Home Center News, the forerunner of HBSDealer, featured several colorful quotes from Walter Ricciardi, who with his brother Robert, ran the four-store paint retailer Ricciardi Brothers.

The headline told the story: “NJ paint dealer refuses to let the competition faze it.”

We got that one right. Since then, Ricciardi Brothers has grown from four locations to 45 stores in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware. During that period of impressive growth, the family-owned and operated company adjusted its slogan from “The Paint People,” to “The Paint and Decorating People,” an adjustment that better reflects its diversified business.

Back in 1995, the mindset of Walter Ricciardi revealed that the company was willing to adapt to serve its customers and grow.

“My father started the company in 1933,” he said. “He realized back then that changing with the times is necessary to succeed in business.”

Walter Ricciardi added: “When Home Depot first came into the area five years ago, all the independent dealers stared to worry,” he said. “Independents had to take a second look at their business and make some changes to combat these superstores. The stores that are around today changed with the times.”

Training was a big part of the culture in the 1990s. “My employees can converse knowledgeably with contractors and do-it-yourselfers,” said Ricciardi.

The article reported that the company was going after commercial and government accounts, and had successfully landed maintenance for the Newark, N.J. School system. And it also reported that word of mouth was working in the paint retailer’s favor.

“There’s a salesperson at Rickel in East Orange [N.J.] who sends many customers to us, and he’s not on our payroll,” Ricciardi said.


HBSDealer’s Throwback Thursday is sponsored by Schaffer Associates, a national management consulting firm specializing in executive search and organizational strategies for the hardware, home improvement, building materials, and consumer products industries. As the premier management consulting firm serving the industry, we help build organizations and leadership teams that foster corporate growth and success well into the future. Contact us at SchafferAssociates.com

keyboard_arrow_downCOMMENTS

Leave a Reply

No comments found

TRENDING STORIES

POLLS

What product category represents the best opportunity for growth in 2019?
Throwback Thursday

Throwback Thursday: Garden Masters

From the archives, a growth business celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2003.

BY HBSDealer Staff

The Oct. 20, 2003 issue of Home Channel News, the forerunner of HBSDealer, included an article under the headline: “Garden Master Helps Dealers Grow.”

The article was part of a special report on Denver-based Pro Group, the buying group of distribution companies and owner of the Garden Master brand. The article pointed to increased competition in the lawn-and-garden industry.

“New competitors have entered the industry, putting a squeeze on independent retailers and distributors,” said Chuck Wyatt, president of Garner, N.C.-based Wyatt Quarles Seed, one of the group’s distributor members. “Garden Master has helped us stay competitive, and promoting the Garden Master name gives retailers some national recognition.”

The article is accompanied a photo in which Shari Kalbach, managing director of Garden Master, and Keith Funk, buyer for Gard’n-Wise Distributors of Denver, looked over information on the company’s internal web site.

“The lawn and garden industry has grown significantly in the last 10 years,” said Kalbach. “Consumers are always looking for the next new trend that will make their yard look better than their neighbor’s”

In 2016, Kalbach was promoted to PRO Group vice president, overseeing merchandising and marketing.


HBSDealer’s Throwback Thursday is sponsored by Schaffer Associates, a national management consulting firm specializing in executive search and organizational strategies for the hardware, home improvement, building materials, and consumer products industries. As the premier management consulting firm serving the industry, we help build organizations and leadership teams that foster corporate growth and success well into the future. Contact us at SchafferAssociates.com

 

keyboard_arrow_downCOMMENTS

Leave a Reply

No comments found

TRENDING STORIES

POLLS

What product category represents the best opportunity for growth in 2019?