Ken Ryan

Articles by this author:

  • Fri, 10/18/2013 - 12:32

    For a company long known for its rust-stopping aerosol cans, Rust-Oleum has evolved into a marketer of cutting-edge offerings, such as Countertop Transformations and the NeverWet liquid repellent system.

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  • Fri, 10/18/2013 - 12:31

    During the height of what some call the Great Recession, as the country was struggling to reverse the economic slide, Tom Hardman was looking for positive themes his hardware store could use to project an attitude that said: “We refuse to participate in the recession.”

    “I wanted something to lift our employees’ and customers’ attitudes. One was to make them feel that individually they could make a difference,” said Hardman, co-owner of Hardman Supply Co., of Spencer, W. Va.

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  • Mon, 05/06/2013 - 11:07

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  • Mon, 05/06/2013 - 11:07

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  • Mon, 04/08/2013 - 15:57

    Late winter snowstorms in the Midwest and Northeast and the prolonged coolness that is forecast to stretch into April will impact several home improvement product categories this spring — some favorably, some not so — according to Planalytics, which provides "business weather intelligence" to companies worldwide.

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  • Mon, 04/08/2013 - 15:57

    For the first time in 20 years, a company has declined to voluntarily implement the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) risk mitigation measures for a pesticide product. And that company, Reckitt Benckiser, makers of the d-CON branded mouse and rat poison products, said it has done nothing wrong, and would rather fight than switch.

    And so goes this cat-and-mouse game that will eventually be decided by the courts.

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  • Fri, 03/15/2013 - 12:39

    Customers entering the Menards store in Fort Wayne, Ind., pass through a turnstile and immediately confront a great wall — the wall of "household essentials & more."

    Just beyond the shelves of chips and cereal and sparkling cider, the wall marks an increased presence for cleaning supplies. While not exactly standard fare for your typical home improvement giant, some experts say carrying everyday items makes perfect sense in today's retail environment.

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  • Thu, 02/21/2013 - 18:41

    Tom Kraeutler, nationally syndicated radio host of "The Money Pit Home Improvement Show," said he was not surprised that flooring was the show's most talked-about category, edging out plumbing by one percentage point.

    "It's actually been a trend we've been watching for many years," Kraeutler said. "Floors are the largest, most heavily used single surface in a house. They take a lot of wear and tear that leads to questions, and are a central decor point lending themselves to regular updating."

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  • Thu, 02/21/2013 - 18:41

    There is no shortage of deck materials that promise a combination of "real-wood beauty" and "durability." One of the latest entrants offers a twist on the story — it really is wood, but "it's something better," said Jim Flickinger, marketing development manager for Perennial Wood. "It's modified wood."

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  • Thu, 02/21/2013 - 18:41

    The image of "Vinnie" peers at customers from atop a video monitor at Costello's Ace Hardware on Long Island, its nose and fingers hanging over the screen.

    "Vinnie" is named after Costello's Ace Hardware founder Vincent Costello, known to longtime customers as Vinnie.

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