Top three major merchandise moves from Denver

Toro, DeWalt and other highlights from the True Value Reunion.
Family time on the show floor: Nerd's Hardware and Home Center of Lexington, Mo. From left, Ken, Cathy and Emily Nordsieck.

True Value company emphasized “assortment penetration,” during its recently concluded Fall Reunion 2022 in Denver. The Chicago-based distributor’s merchandising efforts led to the unveiling of  24 new assortments.

The company also unveiled some specific deals with some familiar brands. The top three: A expanded “Destination DeWalt” offering, a new deal with Toro in outdoor power equipment, and a first look at EasyCare Limitless paint, scheduled to make a splash in 2023.

Cleaning up in Paint

True Value executives had high praise for its new, super-premium interior paint, the latest addition to its paint lineup.

“EasyCare Limitless is the finest paint we have ever made,” said John Vanderpool, divisional president at True Value Manufacturing / General Paint Manufacturing.

Limitless is promoted as extremely washable and easy to apply, carrying a one-coat-coverage guarantee— both features demonstrated repeatedly on the market floor. It’s also formulated with Scuff Armour technology, keeping walls and other surfaces looking smooth for years.

The product is True Value’s own, coming from its paint manufacturing facilities. “One of the great benefits of owning a paint factory is that we can formulate a product that is perfect for the market we serve,” Vanderpool said.

Unveiled in Denver, the paint brand will roll out in the second quarter of 2023.

A Toro model designed to stripe a lawn, like the pros.

Making the cut

Also in Denver, True Value executives promoted a new-and-expanded deal with Toro, the outdoor power equipment brand. As part of the deal, True Value can offer the complete line of Toro’s battery-powered Flex-Force 60V OPE products.

The entire lineup of Toro’s Flex-Force battery-powered product platform will be available for shipment to retail stores in Q1 2023.

Said Jake Kalnitz, senior vice president of merchandising, inventory and pricing at True Value. “This is a real differentiator for us that will allow our retailers to provide their customers with a truly advanced, next-generation range of power tool solutions for every season and every job.”  

Destination DeWalt

Also in the top three of the distributor’s merchandising moves, the introduction of Destination DeWalt, and expanded assortment of product from one of the biggest names in tools.

At Assortment City on the market floor, the DeWalt offering commanded a strategic and dominant position, greeting dealers as they entered the hall. Included in the display were lawn mowers, blades, blowers, cutting tools and accessories, and more. One idea behind the new assortment Kalnitz said, was to help the customer think of True Value as the destination for DeWalt.

Chris Kempa
True Value CEO Chris Kempa

In addition to merchandise moves to generate “assortment penetration,” True Value CEO Chris Kempa pointed to some major growth-oriented initiatives.

One is the development of an enhanced retail margin optimization program. The program is in its pilot phase, and is expected to become widely available early next year. “You have told us how important retail pricing is to attract and retain customers while maximizing profit,” Kempa said.

Another initiative is the “hyper local omnichannel e-commerce. Platform” that rolled out last year and has attracted participation from more than 1,000 stores. “We know there's still a lot to learn about how to best use the platform, but the results have been terrific and we will continue to refine it and work with you.”

In his presentation to dealers, Kempa added: “Our investments in operations, inventory and retail assortments should give you the confidence to fully commit to this growth plan with us.”

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