Hardlines Weekly Newsletter
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May 16, 2011, Volume xvii, #20

“Las Vegas is the only place I know where money really talks – it says, `Goodbye’.” —Frank Sinatra (American jazz singer and actor, 1915-1998)


Home Depot Canada realigns under new American president

TORONTO — Following the departure of Gino DiGioacchino last week from Home Depot Canada, a new management team has been unveiled, “to simplify the structure of our merchandising department, to increase speed to market, and streamline decision making,” said new president Bill Lennie, in a letter to vendors.

Lennie promised “to improve connectivity between merchandising and execution in our stores and better align resources to support our core merchandising strategy.”

Key changes include the appointment of Jeff Kinnaird to replace DiGioacchino as merchandising vp, responsible for merchandising operations, global sourcing, and development of private labels. Kinnaird was most recently vp ops for Canada East.

Mark Getty has become senior director, merchandising operations in charge of field merchandising, store environment, integrated vendor services, and business lifecycle approach and execution. He was previously director, Canadian operations.

John DeFranco, formerly senior director softlines, has become senior director global sourcing and merchandising strategy. He will be responsible for assortment planning, private brands, and trend and design leadership.

Within the category management team, the departments have been streamlined from six directors of merchandising to four. The changes were made to better focus those departments on four key categories: hardlines, building materials, projects, and décor. Pam O’Rourke, director merchandising – hardlines, is now leading departments 25 and 28. Doug Graham, director of merchandising – décor, will now lead departments. 23, 24, 27 L, and 59. Mark Coffey, director of merchandising project business, will now lead departments 29A, 29B, 29K, and 30.

A fourth director of merchandising, for building materials, has yet to be named. That person will lead departments 21, 22, 26, and27E.

Jeff Hastings will be regional vp, operations, Canada West. He’ll assume overall duties for Canadian store operations. He was regional director, operations. Dan McAreavey is now regional vp operations, Canada East. He’ll also continue as vp contractor services for the company’s pro, installation, and rental services. Mike Rowe, vp finance, will add supply chain to his portfolio.

“In 2011, our focus remains unchanged,” Lennie continued in the letter to vendors. “We will continue putting customers first, focusing on in-stock performance, and enhancing store standards and appearance.” He further indicated his desire to grow Home Depot’s business with vendors in future.

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RONA makes cuts ahead of soft first quarter results

BOUCHERVILLE, QC — As retailers everywhere wonder what’s happened to the year so far (bad weather and still-faltering consumer confidence being the main culprits), RONA inc. has let dozens of people go at both head office and in the corporate stores.

The news comes on the heels of an official release from RONA announcing the departure of company CFO Claude Guevin, who will leave effective June 3. All indications are that this was a mutually agreed upon decision.

RONA’s sales were down 4.0% in the first quarter, while same-store sales were down 12.6%. RONA, like the entire industry, has been struggling to get shoppers into its stores since the slowdown began last summer. Then in 2011, the first quarter was plagued by a severe winter – which is just finally ending – that effectively put consumer spending on hold.

The current conditions have forced RONA to re-evaluate every aspect of its business. “Right now, we have to live with the fact that the consumer is really prudent,” says Claude Bernier, evp at RONA. That, plus the late spring, has required strong measures. “The changes that are happening at RONA are to deal with that challenge and will make sure that RONA will be prepared to grow when the time is right.”

In addition to the cuts, RONA has further pledged to slash spending, consider future acquisitions carefully, and reduce inventory spending by millions of dollars.

We always adjust our model – and our people – according to our performance,” Bernier says. Now, the company is returning to the principles of its strategic plan during the last recession, its PET strategy. “We have to return to an efficiency mandate.”

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Canucks arrive in force to Las Vegas hardware show

LAS VEGAS — The National Hardware Show, held here last week, played host to dealers and buyers from across North America and the world. The sold out show enjoyed overall positive response from vendors, even though dealers on both sides of the border have had poor sales due to weather (you mentioned the weather already in this issue! –Editor).

Canadians were here in force, with a strong showing of buyers from Home Hardware, Spancan, TSC Stores, Peavey, Federated Coop, Canadian Tire, Costco Canada, and others, most of whom were at the Maple Leaf Night held by the Canadian Hardware and Housewares Manufacturers Association.

The show was held in tandem with the All-Industry Convention of the North American Retail Hardware Association. The event featured awards for Young Retailers and seminars on social media. (More on the show and convention in next week’s issue –Michael)

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LBMAO changes date of buying show

MISSISSAUGA, ON — The annual buying show of the Lumber and Building Materials Dealers Association is moving from its traditional February time slot to mid-November.

The LBMAO’s Canadian Home Improvement Show has been rescheduled to take place Nov. 17-18, 2011. The move comes after an evaluation of the best times for dealers and vendors to book for the coming year. The show will remain at the Toronto Congress Centre, but move to the south building from the north building.

Show organizers have identified that the new date will better fit into the fall booking season, especially for lumber and commodities purchases. It also positions the show as the first event leading into the new year for the industry. A number of other changes are planned for the show to attract new vendors in a range of categories including lawn and garden, paint and sundries, and kitchen and bath.

“With a new date and expanded focus, CHIS is offering some of the industry’s best value for the LBMAO,” says David Campbell, president of the LBMAO. “This means sales during, and leads to develop after, the show for our dealers and a true head-start on the 2012 sales season for our retailers.”

Campbell says he expects the show to surpass typical annual sales volumes of 1,000-plus purchases, while offering increased value across the new industries being invited to participate.

Once again, the show will host the Johns Manville HARDLINES Dealer Conference, which will provide seminars for dealers on important topics such as social media and customer service.

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Vendors throw support behind British Columbia show

VICTORIA – The spirit of the west coast was alive at the “Spirit of the Westcoast,” the latest buying show hosted by the Building Supply Industry Association of British Columbia. The show, held at the Convention Centre, was well represented by national vendors and regional suppliers.

Attendance by dealers, while solid, was hampered by the timing of other shows that the industry now supports. These include the show held by TIM-BR MARTS just a month earlier, and the Home Hardware Market a few weeks ago, both of which drew dealers from across the country – including from B.C.

Nevertheless, the show provided a great opportunity for networking, from a golf tournament on day one to a closing gala that featured Canadian pop heroes Spirit of the West. The BSIA’s annual dealer achievement awards were given at the gala, as well. Those winners are: Chilliwack Building Supplies – TIM-BR MART (building supply category); Ledner Village Hardware (hardware category); Mac Foster Building Materials, Richmond – RONA (home centre category); and Vanderhoof & District Coop (specialty category).

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The Sherwin Williams Wood Care Group Canada has an exciting role to drive business results supporting our Western Canadian business. This position will be responsible for supporting two of the premier Home Improvement brands Minwax and Thompson’s Waterseal.

Position: Account Executive

Location: Western Canada
This position will be responsible for selling and supporting store level opportunities. The primary focus will be on targeting line extensions, expanded Plan-O-Grams, Introduction of New Products,  securing incremental opportunities and overall store level support for specified geographical region. This position will both support Regional and Independent businesses, as well as supporting our National Account(s) at store level.


  • Minimum 3 yrs Sales and or Sales Related experience
  • Experience and proven ability to conduct outside sales calls
  • Must have proven Sales Track record
  • Must have Merchandising experience
  • Must demonstrate strong communication skills
  • Must demonstrate problem solving skills


  • Bachelor’s Degree preferred
  • Must be able to travel 95% of time/Overnight travel 50-60%
  • Must be willing to work some weekends (Trade and Consumer Shows)
  • Must possess Valid Drivers License

E-mail: laura.a.weaver@sherwin.com   

No agencies, please.
We appreciate your response; however, only candidates under consideration will be contacted.




Lee Valley Tools has created an envied brand built on solid merchandising of quality goods in four distinct lines of business that have made their reputation: Woodworking, Gardening, Hardware and Gift.  This private, multi-channel marketer is now seeking to add a valuable member to their management team:


Reporting to the V.P. Merchandising, the Director, Publications will connect the strategic and business goals of Product Development and Retail Marketing into the design, photography, editing and execution of the company’s renowned catalogue in North America. Stewardship of the development and direction of designers, photographers and  merchandising make-up of each catalogue page to the graphic presentation standards of the company are the fundamental responsibility of this position.

As a candidate, you will have a compelling track record of success as a hands-on manager of creative and technical process and at least 8-10 years of relevant experience managing and mentoring talented teams. Guiding the publication activities, advancing and directing the production of over 25 catalogues a year,you bring a background in a related function, possibly in retail, packaged goods merchandising or advertising. Creative capabilities, visual competencies, good knowledge of the print industry and solid information technology savvy will go a long way in a seamless entry to this fascinating role.

Interested candidate should apply in confidence to Maureen Sinden Executive Search, Suite 200, 440 Laurier Avenue W., Ottawa, ON K1R 7X6 sinden@intranet.ca

We thank all respondents, however, only those candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.


OLFA – Amérique du Nord

Emplacement : Région du Grand Toronto ou Montréal
Position : Représentant(e) Clients Majeurs (RCM)

Le ou la RCM est responsable de la relation de vente auprès des clients majeurs régionaux ou nationaux pour le compte de OLFA – Amérique du Nord. Il ou elle développe, implémente et exécute les programmes de vente pour faire croître la distribution de produit et d’en maintenir la profitabilité. Le ou la titulaire de ce poste est responsable des programmes de service auprès de la clientèle existante ainsi que de l’identification de nouvelles initiatives permettant d’accroître l’offre des produits auprès de notre clientèle.


  • Gestion de la base de clientèle au sein des canaux assignés
  • Exécution des stratégies de vente en lien avec les objectifs de la compagnie et de la division des ventes.
  • Développement des campagnes et des promotions selon les catégories de produit.
  • Analyse des assortiments et faire des recommandations auprès de la clientèle
  • Recherche et évaluation de la clientèle et de la compétition par le biais de positionnement compétitif et d’analyses compétitives.
  • Résolution des problèmes de la clientèle et offre de solutions correspondant aux besoins de la clientèle et de OLFA – Amérique du Nord
  • Effectuer le suivi, l’inscription et les rapports des besoins et des commandes de la clientèle et effectuer les mises à jour dans le système au besoin.


  • BA / BS en administration des affaires, en marketing ou dans un domaine relié. Toute expérience équivalente sera considérée
  • 2 à 4 ans d’expérience dans un environnement de ventes (préférablement dans l’industrie de la quincaillerie)
  • Solides compétences en présentation ainsi qu’en communication orale et écrite
  • Intérêt marqué pour le service à la clientèle
  • Capacité de voyager (30 % du temps en voyagement exigé)
  • Bilingue anglais – français

OLFA – Amérique du Nord
Courriel :
Agences s’abstenir.

Nous apprécions votre application, toutefois, seulement les candidat(e)s retenu(e)s seront contacté(e)s.



Premier Ceramics, a leading ceramic tile distributor in Ontario is seeking a territory sales representative to service customers in the GTA and southern Ontario market.

Competitive salary and incentive program.

Reporting to the Director of Sales & Marketing, responsibilities will include direct account management, achieving sales targets and contributing to development of sales and marketing programs.

Key competencies include proven ability to generate new revenue streams and effectively maintain customer relationships, strong communication skills, good analytical skills, ability to work independently and detail oriented.

Minimum 3 years field sales experience preferable in the flooring /ceramic tile industry.

Respond by email to: info@premierceramics.com



  • A conscientious, highly motivated manager with a results-oriented track record in developing new business. view this resumé Back to top
  • A goal oriented sales director that has superior management skills, customer oriented, with in depth knowledge of the industry and the ability to achieve results. view this resumé Back to top
  • An experienced merchandising executive possessing passion, vision, and a strategic approach to delivering bottom-line. view this resumé Back to top
  • Senior sales/marketing leader with experience in all classes of trade wishing new HARDLINES career. view this resumé Back to top
  • Very Experienced Business Unit Manager, great passion for generating sales and building relastionships.view this resumé Back to top
  • Worked through my career within the manfucaturer, wholesale and consumer goods industries. view this resumé Back to top
  • Senior Sales Manager with vast experience in retail and wholesale sales growth in Canada. view this resumé Back to top

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