Throwback Thursday: 20 years ago RONA looked west for acquisition

Throwback Thursday is a regular feature in which we dip into the archives of the Hardlines Weekly Report.

In our final issue of 2003, we ran a story with the headline: “RONA CEO anticipates acquisition by mid 2004.”

RONA had just completed, in May of 2003, the second of its public offerings, which had brought in $280 million combined. Now RONA, which had 540 stores on its roster, was looking for “a large operation in western Canada which will either be taken over or signed up as a RONA member,” according to Robert Dutton (pictured), then-president and CEO.

That company turned out to be Alberta LBM retailer Totem Building Supplies, which was operating 14 stores with two more under construction when RONA announced its purchase for $100 million cash in December 2004. The deal would close the following spring.