Personnel Update:

Boston Interiors here has named Stefanie Lucas its CEO.  Company founder Ken Loring has relinquished the CEO title, but remains chairman and will continue to sit on the retailer’s board of advisers.

Canadian Tire Corp. has chosen Michael Medline as its new President and CEO.  Stephen Wetmore, who had run Canadian Tire since 2009, is moving into the post of Deputy Chairman.

Cedar Creek has named Mark Porter VP of Operations.  To fill Porter’s previous position, Cedar Creek reached outside the company and hired Tony Butler as VP – South Region.  The moves reflect growth in 2014 and plans for continued expansion in the future.

Cedar Creek announced that Chris Lynch, General Manager of Cedar Creek Denver, retired Dec 12.  In 1982, Lynch joined Reid and Wright, Inc. where he worked for 32 years in a variety of Sales, Operations and Management positions that culminated in his being appointed to Vice President and Chief Operating Officer in 2001.  When Reid and Wright, Inc. was acquired by Cedar Creek, LLC in March of 2014, Lynch was appointed General Manager of the combined operations, and oversaw the merging of the two entities and setting the Denver Division on its current pathway to success.

Do it Best has promoted Bob Harville to the post of Regional Sales and Business Development Manager.  In his new role, Harville and his team of territory managers will counsel Do it Best members as well as actively seek to recruit new ones. Harville will lead a team of 10 territory managers across 12 states in the Southeast.

Emery-Waterhouse announced the promotion of Megan Freise to Senior Brand Manager, in a move described as a preparation for strategic growth. In this new role, Freise will lead the development and execution of Emery’s brand messaging, emphasizing the renewed focus on retailer strategy and success.  In February, Ace Hardware acquired Emery-Waterhouse.

PPG Industries announced that Marcos Achar Levy, previously CEO of Comex, has been appointed VP Architectural Coatings, Mexico, and CEO, PPG – Comex. He will report to Michael McGarry, PPG COO. 


Mergers and Acquisitions:

PPG Industries has completed its acquisition of Mexican architectural and industrial coatings company Consorcio Comex, S.A. de C.V. (“Comex”).

Mexico’s Federal Economic Competition Commission has approved the deal following PPG’s June 30 announcement that it had agreed to take on the company for $2.3 billion.

This also means PPG has succeeded where Sherwin-Williams failed. Sherwin-Williams agreed to purchase Consorcio Comex approximately two years ago, but spent the next several months on hold waiting for regulatory approval. It eventually abandoned its plans to purchase the Mexican portion of the business last April.

US LBM Holdings acquired K-I Lumber & Building Materials of Louisville, Kentucky, bringing  the US LBM footprint to 90 locations across 14 states.

The move pushes the number of US LBM divisions 15.  K-I Lumber will continue to be run by President Bob DeFerraro. The dealer was founded in 1932. It operates two locations in Louisville in addition to full-service distribution centers in Lexington, Kentucky; Clarksville, Indiana; and Evansville, Indiana.


Industry Insight:

Lowe’s Canada will open three new stores in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario, during 2015.  The new Lowe’s stores will be located in Lethbridge, Alberta (opening in spring 2015); Saskatoon, Saskatachewan (opening in summer 2015); and Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario (opening in summer 2015).

Sherwin-Williams is celebrating a major milestone.  The company announced it is opening its 4,000th store in Pennsylvania.


Green Initiatives/Sustainability:

The IKEA Group has made its largest investment ever in renewable energy by buying a 165-megawatt wind farm in Cameron County, Tex.

Ikea already owns and operates wind farms in nine countries. The company said its latest purchase in the United States will contribute significantly to the goal of producing as much renewable energy as the total energy the company consumes globally. The Cameron Wind farm is expected to be fully operational in late 2015. Earlier this year the IKEA Group bought its first U.S. wind farm in Hoopeston, Ill. The Texas wind farm will be more than one-and-a-half times the size of the Illinois project.

The IKEA Hoopeston and Cameron wind farms are expected to generate nearly 1,000 gigawatt hours of electricity per year, which is equivalent to the average annual electricity consumption of around 90,000 American households. The IKEA Group has committed to own and operate 279 wind turbines in nine countries, and will invest a total of $1.9 billion in wind and solar power through 2015.

Cameron County is located in a particularly favorable wind area in the south of Texas, which is the leading state in the United States for wind energy production. The wind farm will be fully owned by the IKEA Group and will be constructed and managed by renewable energy company Apex Clean Energy. The project will use 55 Acciona Windpower 3-megawatt turbines.

Tractor Supply Company announced that the Company’s new Store Support Center in Brentwood, Tennessee, has achieved LEED® (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. LEED certification is awarded for buildings that are energy efficient and environmentally sustainable in design and operation.

Clean, renewable solar energy was also incorporated into the design of the new 260,000 square-foot facility. A solar array consisting of 165 panels was installed on the roof of the building that generates up to 50 kilowatts of electricity. This system, along with a similar system installed earlier this year at the Company’s store in nearby Hendersonville, Tenn., represent the first solar projects in the Company’s history and are expected to generate clean power for the next 25 to 30 years.

Tractor Supply was able to build the new Store Support Center to the LEED Silver standard by incorporating a number of environmentally friendly features, including:

Energy efficient design and heating/cooling systems;

Water saving plumbing and irrigation systems;

Recycled and regionally sourced building materials;

Low-emitting materials for all adhesives, paints, carpet systems and composite materials; and

Low mercury lamps and LED lighting.

The new facility is expected to reduce energy costs by 19 percent compared with baseline code requirements and reduce potable water usage by 40 percent indoors and 60 percent outdoors (irrigation). During the construction process, an estimated 87 percent of construction waste was diverted from landfills.