Ace Hardware Acquires Jensen Distribution Services

According to Ace, Jensen will advance the company's wholesale strategy to be the best provider of hardlines products for independent lumber, paint, nursery, industrial, and hardware outlets.

OAK BROOK, Ill. — Ace Hardware Corporation, the largest retailer-owned hardware cooperative in the world, announced Monday it has acquired Jensen Distribution Services; a profitable 131-year-old distributor of hardlines goods.

Founded in 1883, and based in Spokane, Wash., Jensen Distribution Services is a wholesale hardware distributor with approximately $150 million in wholesale revenue that serves more than 2,000 customers in 11 western states. Jensen Distribution Services carries more than 65,000 items, including household hardware, hand and power tools, electrical, paint and sundries, outdoor living, housewares, automotive, and lawn and garden products.

“As the hardlines industry evolves and consolidates, Ace Hardware is faced with the options of simply letting the chips fall our way, or actively participating as a leader to shape this industry for the long-term benefit of Ace shareholders,” said John Venhuizen, President and CEO, Ace Hardware Corp.

“While Ace’s retail strategy continues to be a priority with the stated mission of being the best provider of products, services and operating methods to convenience hardware retailers, Emery-Waterhouse and Jensen Distribution Services will advance Ace’s wholesale strategy to be the best provider of hardlines products for independent lumber, paint, nursery, industrial and hardware outlets,” Venhuizen said.

“The Jensen organization looks forward to a bright future alongside Ace Hardware, the world’s largest and fastest growing convenience hardware retailer,” said Mike Jensen, CEO, Jensen Distribution Services. “I’m pleased that fifth generation family members Chris Jensen and Micah Dunlap will play an active role in shaping the next chapter of the Jensen organization.”

As a result of the acquisition, Ace plans to provide measurable long-term financial benefits for its shareholders, including enhanced buying power for both Ace Hardware and Jensen Distribution Services. The acquisition also creates a platform for lower cost of goods driven by scale and price synchronization, as well as access to new categories, products and suppliers.

After serving as Jensen Distribution Services CEO for more than 25 years, Mike Jensen plans to retire in 2015; his son and daughter Chris Jensen and Micah Dunlap will remain with the company and run the business as they do today. “Mike is a high-character individual and a genuine legend in the industry. We wish he would remain with Jensen for the next 25 years,” said Venhuizen.

With both Emery-Waterhouse and Jensen Distribution Services now under the Ace Hardware wholesale division, Ace Hardware is pleased to announce the appointment of Hoyoung Pak to President of Ace Wholesale Holdings, reporting to John Surane, Executive Vice President of Marketing, Merchandising and Sales. Pak joins Ace Hardware from IRI where he served as Chief Operating Officer. He has also held executive roles with Groupon, Discover and McKinsey & Co. “We are pleased to welcome Hoyoung to the Ace team,” Venhuizen said. “I am confident that his expertise and leadership will continue to drive and further strengthen Ace’s wholesale business.”

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