CHHMA announces induction of Davis, Nykoliation and Feldman to Hall of Fame

The Canadian Hardware & Housewares Manufacturers Association has revealed its inductees to the 35th Hardware and Housewares Industry Hall of Fame.

Honoured this year are Terry Davis, past president and CEO of Home Hardware Stores Ltd.; Dennis Nykoliation, retired president of Black & Decker Canada, CanWel Building Products and GSW Building Products; and Accent Fairchild Group founder Solly Feldman.

The awards were announced by CHHMA President Sam Moncada. The Hall of Fame was established in 1984 to recognize the achievements of leaders and pioneers in Canada’s hardware and housewares industries. Over the years, 68 industry leaders, inventors, business founders and builders from the retail and manufacturing sectors have received the honour.

This year’s inductees will be honoured on April 2 at a luncheon held in conjunction with the annual CHHMA Spring Conference at the Mississauga Convention Centre. (To view the entire list of past inductees, click here.)

WRLA Buying Show draws dealers to Calgary

The Western Retail Lumber Association’s WRLA Buying Show drew healthy attendance from dealers throughout the West at Calgary’s BMO Centre—amidst a fresh look and despite some hiccups that threatened to mar the success of the event.

Under WRLA President Liz Kovach, this year’s show, held January 16 to 18, made some changes, including streamlining the entertainment. Rather than provide a “big ticket” musical act during a gala dinner, the show opted for an evening networking event. The result saved money for the association and freed up time for attendees to meet on their own afterward.

According to Kovach, the truck that was to deliver the association’s show materials arrived two days late. Nevertheless, she reports, “We managed to still ensure that 84% of registered attendees picked up their show badges on Wednesday. Our new registration system, coupled with expanded registration kiosks, allowed for quick and efficient registration on site.”

The show also featured a program of knowledge sessions, which were held before and during the show itself. “Education always rates high on member surveys,” Kovach adds. “We decided to incorporate educational offerings to the show to provide other valuable opportunities to attendees.”

The sessions started on Wednesday afternoon and were offered throughout the day on Thursday and Friday. The format included incorporating a classroom right on the show floor.

The addition of a rest area, named the Zen Lounge and sponsored by ACCEO, provided WRLA members the opportunity to take a break and get refreshed. Device charging stations, fresh water and massages courtesy of massage therapy students from Mount Royal University were provided.

The New Product Area, sponsored by TIMBER MART, was expanded and relocated to the middle of the show floor this year.

One of the highlights of the WRLA Buying Show was the presentation of the association’s 2018 Industry Achievement Award. It went to Brian Kusisto, CEO of the Sexton Group and president of its parent company, Kenroc Building Materials. A new series of awards was introduced as well. The inaugural Sales Rep of the Year Awards were presented to Bill Fast of Orgill from Manitoba, Darren Kiel All Weather Windows in Saskatchewan, Brian Torrens from AFA Alberta and Jason Cryderman from Trimlite in British Columbia.

In assessing the overall success of the event, Kovach says feedback from exhibitors was largely positive, citing the quality of the attendees that visited their booths.

Princess Auto unveils expansion plan for Quebec with two stores

Princess Auto has announced plans to enter the Quebec market and has confirmed two stores there. The first will be in Saint-Jérôme, near Grand Heron Boulevard. The second will be in Laval. That location will be near Robert-Bourassa Boulevard. Both stores are scheduled to open in fall 2019.

Under the leadership of Marc-André Fournier, vice-president of operations in Quebec, Princess Auto is building a team to support growth in the province. Store directors for the two locations were hired last spring, to provide them with necessary training. Both individuals bring with them strong management and retail backgrounds: Danielle Rozon has previously worked at Bureau en gros (Staples), Target and Patrick Morin and will head the Laval store. Yves Bergeron, whose background includes Lunetterie NewLook and Oakley, will head up the Saint-Jérôme store.

Recruitment is currently under way for assistant store leader and department manager positions for both locations. Mass hiring for an array of positions is scheduled to start in May.

Winnipeg-based Princess Auto sells tools and equipment, ranging from hydraulics to welding, to trade professionals, home mechanics and other DIYers. While its roots are in Western Canada, almost half of its 46 stores across Canada are located in Ontario.

Federated Co-operatives works to beautify its communities

A series of improvement and beautification projects across Western Canada will be made possible thanks to Federated Co-operatives Ltd., which administers the Co-op Community Spaces Program. Now in its fifth year, the program dedicates $2 million for capital projects for non-profits, registered charities and community service co-operatives, from February to March. The initiative represents more than 170 independent local co-ops across Western Canada that form the Co-operative Retailing System. The program was launched in 2015 and has provided $6.5 million to 88 projects, including parks, greenhouses and sports fields.