Is the hardware business Amazon proof? Ace Hardware thinks so.
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Ace Hardware CEO John Venhuizen, told FOX Business on Friday that they are having success taking on Amazon.
“Don’t misunderstand. We all know Amazon is the most disruptive company in human history,” he told Stuart Varney. “But there is a desire of ours to be owning the home preservation business — and a lot of that has to do with feel and touch. And we are sort of blessed that tends to be a little bit more insulated from the convenience of commoditized one-click ordering.”
According to Venhuizen, growth has climbed sharply over the recent years. It has 5,135 stores around the world, he said, with about 4,500 located in the U.S.
“Our retailers are amazing -- they never cease to amaze me,” he said. “With all the media fawning all over the retail apocalypse our retailers have increased the sales of their stores in the last six years from $11.5 [billion] to $16 billion, which would make Ace about the sixth-largest franchise in the world.”
And it doesn’t stop there: “And they, which is a testament to their local ownership, have had eight years in a row of same-store sales growth,” he added. “Which is pretty amazing when you consider what’s happened to retailers around the world,” he explained.
Ace franchisees have a chance to show what their made of by showcasing their new innovations for tools needed around the house at their annual convention in Chicago this week.
According to Venhuizen, “paint, power and barbeque” always steal the show.
“Our growth rate in outdoor and barbeque is in excess of 26 percent over the last four years,” he said. “And it’s driven a lot by great suppliers like Big Green Egg, Traeger and Weber that will give us high-quality exclusive stuff you can’t go get at some discount website.”
Ace Hardware -- a privately held company — has no plans to go public anytime soon, Venhuizen said.