Waters Hardware buys Nuts and Bolts

Waters Hardware grows to 20 stores with purchase of seven-store Nuts and Bolts hardware chain.
Waters Hardware team
The Waters Hardware leadership team, from left, brothers Bo Gerken, Wes Gerken, and Rusty Gerken, alongside their brother-in-law Mike Valent. Growth-minded, they carefully vet every opportunity based on location, market potential and price.

As part of an aggressive growth strategy, Waters Hardware, a Do it Best dealer, recently completed the purchase of the seven-store Nuts and Bolts hardware store chain serving Missouri and Kansas.

“Hardware is a natural extension of our original rental business,” said Owner Rusty Gerken. “These Nuts and Bolts locations are serving regions we’ve been looking to grow into because they complement our current offerings so well.”

The addition of Nuts and Bolts brings their total number of home improvement stores to 20, 11 of which house Gerken Rent-All service centers, as well as 13 stand-alone Gerken Rent-All locations and three lumberyards, said the company.

The original seven-location Waters Hardware is itself an acquisition by the Gerken family, who founded Gerken Rent-All in 2002 and began their expansion into hardware and home improvement when they first purchased Paola Hardware in 2016.

“Bringing them into our family of home improvement businesses just made sense, and we’ve already started introducing enhancements we know customers will appreciate,” said Gerken.

Waters Hardware logo

Each store will be rebranded with the Waters Hardware name and will undergo a complete store reset, including refreshed interiors, layout updates, and product additions to ensure each community has access to an optimal assortment of merchandise.

“We’re excited to finish these remodeling projects and keep the momentum going,” said Gerken. “And we’ll continue looking for new opportunities to grow. Keep watching. We’re just getting started!”

All seven Nuts and Bolts locations will remain open as they go through a complete remodel, said Waters Hardware; and the Gerken’s intend to retain all Nuts & Bolts associates. Also, Gerken Rent-All heavy-duty equipment rental will be added to select locations, said the firm.

Each Waters location carries a wide variety of tools, builder hardware, electrical supplies, plumbing and heating supplies, lawn and garden supplies, sporting goods, housewares, and paint and sundries.

Beyond equipment rental, Gerken Rent-All also offers party item rental, propane bottle sales and refills, moving boxes and supplies, and torch bottle exchange.

Waters Hardware is a member of the Do it Best co-op.