Valspar acquires Ace Hardware's paint manufacturing assets, including two production plants near Chicago; companies also sign long-term supply agreement, with Valspar to produce, supply Ace-branded paint to more than 4,000 US Ace retail locations

Andrew Rogers

Andrew Rogers

Jan 3, 2013 – Business Wire

MINNEAPOLIS and CHICAGO , January 3, 2013 (press release) – The Valspar Corporation (NYSE:VAL) today announced a long-term strategic supply relationship with Ace Hardware Corporation under which Valspar will manufacture and supply Ace-branded paint products as well as make a comprehensive line of Valspar-branded paints available to more than 4,000 Ace retail locations in the United States. In addition, the two companies announced that Valspar has acquired Ace Hardware’s paint manufacturing assets, including two manufacturing facilities located near Chicago.

“Our agreement with Ace extends the Valspar brand while further strengthening and diversifying Valspar’s portfolio of industry-leading consumer paints in the North American market”

“Our agreement with Ace extends the Valspar brand while further strengthening and diversifying Valspar’s portfolio of industry-leading consumer paints in the North American market,” said Gary Hendrickson, chairman and chief executive officer of Valspar. “This new business also positions Valspar well for further growth as the U.S. housing market continues to recover.”

The relationship combines Ace’s in-store service model and neighborhood store footprint with Valspar’s national paint brand, manufacturing and distribution expertise, and technology. Ace customers can expect the same quality and performance from Ace-branded paint products while also benefitting from Valspar’s color expertise, enhanced sales support for retailers and a competitively priced product assortment.

“Ace Hardware is pleased to enter into a long-term supply relationship with Valspar,” said Ray Griffith, chief executive officer, Ace Hardware Corporation. “Our relationship with Valspar will allow Ace to create an enhanced customer experience that generates more paint sales for our valued owners. We have ambitious goals for our paint category, and this step puts Ace on the path to growing market share in liquid paint and increasing revenue opportunities for all Ace retailers.”

Valspar will immediately begin manufacturing and distributing Ace’s existing portfolio of Ace-branded paint products. Over the next year, Ace and Valspar will collaborate with retail owners to enhance their paint departments. Introduction of Valspar paint products is expected to begin in the fall of 2013. Ace will retain ownership of its existing paint brand trademarks, including Clark+Kensington® and Ace Paint, but Valspar will manufacture Ace’s product lines exclusively for the retailer.

About The Valspar Corporation
The Valspar Corporation (NYSE: VAL) is a global leader in the paint and coatings industry. Since 1806, Valspar has been dedicated to bringing customers the latest innovations, the finest quality and the best customer service in the coatings industry. For more information, visit www.valsparglobal.com.

About Ace Hardware
For more than 85 years, Ace Hardware has been known as the helpful hardware store in thousands of communities across America. Customers depend on Ace to help them take care of their homes quickly and easily so they can get on with their lives. In 2012, Ace ranked "Highest in Customer Satisfaction among Home Improvement Stores for the Sixth Consecutive Year," according to J.D. Power and Associates. With over 4,600 hardware stores locally owned and operated across the globe, Ace is the largest hardware cooperative in the industry. Headquartered in Oak Brook, Ill., Ace and its subsidiaries currently operate 14 distribution centers in the U.S and also have distribution capabilities in Shanghai, China; Panama City, Panama; and Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Its retailers' stores are located in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and approximately 60 countries. For more information on Ace, visit www.acehardware.com.

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