"The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet."— Aristotle (384 – 322 BCE)

Conference showcases competitive tools for independents

WORLD HEADQUARTERS — The role of the independent dealer in the home improvement industry will be a central focus of the 12th annual Hardlines Conference, to be held in Toronto Oct.15-16, 2007. Break-out sessions on in-store branding, how to use technology to compete against multi-format stores, and building sales through staff training are all designed to provide profitable tools for independents who want to compete in today's consolidated market. Guest speakers will include Jane VanNoy, a TIM-BR Mart dealer who won a Hardware Merchandising Outstanding Retailer Award in 2006. VanNoy will share with delegates the story of how she grew her business in the face of significant challenges. As president and CEO of Orgill, Ron Beal will explain how his company offers independents in the U.S. a supply model not available in Canada since the demise of Sodisco-Howden. Ian Gray, president of LBMX, will discuss how independents can use technology to compete with multi-store players. Phil Otto of Revolve Branding will speak to the issue of building the brand at store level. To register for the Hardlines conference, click here.

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RONA's recycled paint program hits milestone

BOUCHERVILLE — Last week marked the 10th year of operation for RONA's paint recovery program in Quebec, which is managed in partnership with Peintures Récupérées du Québec. Over the least decade, 3.6 million containers of paint have been recovered, reconstituted and sold under the Boomerang Paint brand. To highlight the anniversary, RONA declared September "Paint Recovery Month" in its stores across Quebec. Throughout the month, RONA is inviting consumers in Quebec to bring their old paint in to RONA and Rêno-Dépot stores. The goal is to collect 100,000 containers of paint. The program is noteworthy because it began when the environment was not top-of-mind with mainstream consumers, said RONA president and CEO Robert Dutton in a prepared statement. "Our team was ahead of the game on the issue and showed leadership and innovation in creating what is still today a benchmark for North America in terms of paint recovery and recycling," he added.

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Ace ponders going public

OAK BROOK, Ill. — Ace Hardware Corp., America's largest co-op hardware wholesaler, has told its members it is considering launching an IPO to go public. According to Crain's, Ace CEO Ray Griffith sent a letter to dealer members stating that converting to a traditional corporation would enable the company to generate cash to fuel expansion. The move would follow the example of RONA, Canada's second-largest home improvement retailer, which was a dealer-owned co-op until launching an IPO in 2004. Since then, the company has grown rapidly through acquisition, new store openings and dealer expansion. Ace has also been on an aggressive expansion campaign, opening 130 stores or more a year for the past three years. Going corporate would not only provide cash to help dealers stay competitive, but could very well anticipate the expansion of RONA into the U.S., a move that the company's CEO, Robert Dutton, has expressed interest in making.

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Home Depot has grand opening in China

BEIJING  Home Depot made its public entry into China last week, with launches at the 12 Home Way stores it acquired late last year. The formal openings came after eight months of associate training, consumer analysis, and remerchandising at stores in Tianjin, Beijing, Xi'an, Qingdao, Shenyang and Zhengzhou, all of which have underwent interior and exterior renovations. As part of its entry into the Chinese market, Home Depot launched its Eco Options program, and installed water treatment centers in each location to show consumers how to purify their water for drinking. New bathroom products from Kohler have also been introduced, as has the Behr paint brand, which is sold from newly designed "colour centres". Annette Verschuren, president, Home Depot Asia and Canada, was there with Yves Chen, president, Home Depot China, to thank management and associates of the Home Way—now Home Depot. "Their energy, positive attitudes and dedication to excellent customer service are unparalleled," said Verschuren. "Thanks to their dedicated efforts, combined with Home Depot's international strength in retail and innovative product sourcing, we are reshaping our stores to best meet the needs of China's home improvement customers."

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Loblaw's new format superstore opens in Milton

MILTON — Loblaw's Co. Ltd., which has suffered several quarters of disappointing results, opened a pilot of its new superstore format here last week. The new-format store, formerly called the Real Canadian Superstore, has been renamed Loblaw Superstore. The ailing retailer will have placed high hopes on consumer response to the new layout, which includes wider aisles and "clutter-free" checkout lines that are devoid of magazines, confectionery and sundry items. Other changes include improved lighting and signage, and more polished presentation of merchandise. Home and appliance departments have been scaled back, with new prominence given to the Joe Fresh Style, a line of affordable clothing and accessories. That line now features a range of stylish clothes for children and teens. More importantly, a new line of home décor items is expected to hit store shelves in time for the holiday season. There is also a strong "green" component to the new store. As part of Loblaw's commitment to eliminate one billion plastic grocery bags from Canada's landfills within one year, it will be the first major grocery store in North America to discontinue use of traditional plastic grocery bags. The parking lot also includes a small number of preferred spots for hybrid vehicles.

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Tembec acquires green energy plant

TEMISCAMING, ON — Tembec has finalized its acquisition of Chapleau Cogeneration Ltd. in Chapleau, ON. The transaction, which closed on Aug. 15, consists of a series of future annual payments to 2022, with a present value of approximately $1 million. With the addition of the Chapleau facility, Tembec's total captive generating capacity at its facilities in Canada and France exceeds 150 megawatts. All of the 26 megawatts located in Ontario are "green", based on either hydro or biomass - fired generation. Located next to the Chapleau SPF sawmill, the cogeneration plant uses wasted heat to provide energy, and are "a valuable addition to Tembec's operations," Dennis Rounsville, president of the Forest Products Group, said in a prepared statement. The cogeneration plant receives most of its biomass fuel supply directly from the sawmill and, in return, the sawmill receives steam for its lumber kilns. "This is a very logical and sound acquisition," said Mr. Rounsville. "It is also consistent with our corporate priorities in terms of increasing the amount of electricity produced internally and reducing our reliance on purchased energy in all forms. [It] will contribute to a further strengthening of the competitive position of an already good operation."

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Hardlines Marketplace

Don't miss the products and services on the Hardlines web Marketplace ( https://hardlines.ca/html/marketplace.html ) And check out Hardlines Classifieds on the web ( https://hardlines.ca/html/classifieds.html )


Retail Sales Manager

Master Lock, an industry leader in storage and security hardware, is seeking a Retail Sales Manager. A strong understanding of the Canadian retail hardware and home improvement market is preferred, along with at least 5 years experience with both national and regional accounts. Preference given to candidates with;
  1. 5 years overall sales/marketing experience in working with Canadian retailers.
  2. very proficient in Microsoft Office, especially Excel and PowerPoint
  3. exposure to national accounts
  4. strong analytical and presentation skills
  5. self starter with a creative mind
Education equivalent to college diploma or university degree required, preferably marketing or business administration. Master Lock Canada is conveniently located in Oakville. Nearby highway access includes the QEW at Winston Churchill and 403 at Dundas Street. Qualified applicants should send resume and salary requirements via email to tmedeiro@mlock.com. No phone calls please.

Market Development Manager Wanted for British Columbia and Alberta

Reporting to the Director, the successful applicant will be an energetic professional with expertise in development and operations and/or have a thorough understanding of the home improvement industry. Your key responsibility will be to oversee implementation of the organization's strategic development plans while recruiting and building relationships with new dealers. Responsibilities:
  • Be responsible for the recruitment and integration of new dealers within your assigned region
  • Analyses the territory
  • Evaluates potential dealers
  • Presents the organization to prospective dealers
  • Qualifies dealers according to membership criteria
  • Ensure mentoring of new dealers
  • Other duties and responsibilities as assigned by the Director
  • A minimum of 5 – 10 years of experience in the hardware, building material and/or home improvement industry
  • Experience in recruiting new members
  • Excellent ability to build relationships with dealers
  • Ability to interpret financial statements and present budgets
  • Flexibility to changing priorities with short notice to meet business needs
  • Exceptional communicator with strong planning and organizational skills
  • You must be comfortable with travel as there will be significant overnights
  • Motivated, self-starter able to work independently and as part of a team
  • Computer literate with strong understanding of Microsoft Office software
  • Valid drivers license and safe driving record
  • College diploma an asset
Interested applicants should fax their resume c/o Hardlines at 416.489.6154 or email Brady Peever, brady@hardlines.ca and put "PO Box 650" in the subject line.

Atlantic Canada Dealer Development Manager Employment Opportunity

TIM-BR MARTS Ltd., Canada's largest dealer owned building materials buying co-operative, representing over $2 billion in annual purchases, $3.4 billion in retail sales and 600 locations, is seeking a Dealer Development Manager to provide support to our dealer network in Atlantic Canada. The successful candidate will be bilingual, have significant retail experience in the building supply industry and excellent communication, computer and organization skills. Salary is commensurate with qualifications and experience. Please email your resume and cover letter to jobs@timbrmart.ca. Please include your salary expectations in the cover letter and "Atlantic Dealer Development Manager" in the subject line of your email. All applications will be held in the strictest of confidence. TIM-BR MART is an equal opportunity employer. We thank all applicants for their interest, but only those selected for an interview will be contacted.


Industry veteran seeks investment opportunity with existing rep agency or similar business. Looking for equity position with intention of outright purchase over the next 2-5 years.

Offering: 20-plus years experience sales, with specialty in seasonal, plumbing and electrical. National exposure with ALL majors and "tier 2" customers—including buying groups, etc. Can call on Head Offices and/or independent stores. Reply in absolute confidence to: Hardlines Classifieds "Box 102" 542 Mt. Pleasant Rd. Toronto M4S 2M7

brady@hardlines.ca and put "BOX 102" in your email's subject line.

Westman Steel Industries, including Canada Culvert, is one of Canada's largest manufacturers of steel roofing and siding products, galvanized steel culverts, and related products. Customers are serviced by 15 manufacturing and distribution facilities located in Ontario and throughout Western Canada. Westman Steel Industries is a member of The Westman Group of Companies, a dynamic entrepreneurial group of companies also composed of: Behlen Industries LP, and Meridian Manufacturing Group. Continued growth creates a career opportunity in Langley, British Columbia.

Territory Sales Representative

Working with guidance from the General Manager and while maintaining a sales budget, the successful candidate will develop and maintain long-term relationships with customers in British Columbia; sales region: Okanagan, Kootenays, and Prince George. The professional will effectively perform all aspects of the marketing program including: sales, advertising, product promotions/literature, point of purchase displays, product knowledge seminars, pricing and logistics. Using a consultative selling approach, the incumbent will ensure sales and marketing objectives are achieved. The ideal candidate has a minimum of one to three years of demonstrated experience in sales and/or marketing, preferably from a steel and/or roofing background. Having a post secondary degree is desirable. Equivalent education and experience combinations will be considered. Communication, interpersonal, customer service, problem-solving, organizational, and time and priority management skills are necessary for success. Significant travel is required. Westman Steel Industries provides a competitive total compensation package with commission incentive and many opportunities for learning and professional growth. Apply online via Careers at www.westmangroup.com or connect with Diana Chomichuk, CHRP, Corporate Human Resource Manager at 204.224.6343. 

We thank all applicants for their interest. WGI Westman Group Inc., is an Equal Opportunity Employer

Senior Sales Manager

Maxtech Consumer Products Limited, based in Waterloo, ON is an innovative company that supplies Hand Tools & Power Tool accessories in North America & Europe. Maxtech is a major supplier to many major Home Improvement Retailers and Big Box stores in USA & Canada. The company is looking for a highly motivated result-driven Senior Sales Manager based in Waterloo to complement the present Sales Team. The incumbent will be responsible for devising sales strategies for the US, increasing the customer base in the US, and increasing the product base to existing customers in order to ensure that budgeted sales numbers are met or exceeded. This opportunity affords the incumbent to set their own total compensation based on a lucrative commission structure. Experience in the industry & willing to travel is essential. Prior experience in US market is desirable. Salary & perks based on experience, qualifications & previous achievements. If you are a self-starter, a goal setter & an achiever that is able to recognize market & customer needs, please contact Arvinder Hanspal at arvinderh@maxtech-mfg.com.


  • Sell your company - or buy one - with Hardlines Classifieds!
  • Do your executive search, find new lines or get new reps in the Hardlines Marketplace.
  • Only $2.75 per word for three weeks in the classifieds.
  • To place your ad, call Brady Peever at 416-489-3396 or email: brady@hardlines.ca