Kroger Co. and Ace Hardware have been in preliminary talks to open Ace Hardware locations inside Kroger stores, according to reports from TheStreet.com and Supermarket News. The reports note that Ace Hardware, whose retail outlets are independently owned and operated, has been seeking to expand its partnerships with other retailers. It debuted a 5,000-square-foot “Express” format in 2012 to operate in smaller markets and inside existing retail locations. Since that time, it has offered operators $150,000 to open store-within-a-store locations in retailers such as supermarkets and paint stores, TheStreet.com reported. The grocery channel is still a promising avenue for adding new stores, according to Dan Miller, Ace’s vice president-retail operations and new business, in an interview last April. “Ace now has 151 grocery units, with 41 freestanding Ace and 110 a combination of a hardware store within a grocery store. In 2016 we added 24 grocery units, so it continues to grow,” he said. Ace now has four hardware formats for the grocery channel: Express, Convenience, Neighborhood and Super. The minimum space requirement is 4,000 square feet for Express and the average is 8,000 square feet, Miller said. For more information, click here. Subscribe for Free The Hardware Connection is a digital magazine targeted to independent hardware/home improvement retailers. It is the only industry magazine designed and distributed solely in electronic format and currently reaches over 63,000 people in the two-step channel. The Hardware Connection publishes four Newsletters each year in addition to eight magazine issues. To sign up yourself or additional staff to a free subscription to receive The Hardware Connection magazine and newsletter in electronic format, please click here. Learn More About the Following Click here to learn about ECi Software Solutions Click here to learn about WD-40 Click here to learn about Hyde Tools Click here to learn about Epicor
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