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Here's an interesting article from 2014 about the acquisition of BM by Warren Buffett's company Berkshire Hathaway.

BM almost went into Lowes stores until Buffett stopped it. He has promised never to go into the big box stores even though that would earn the company more money.

FYI:
I did not know that Canadian Tire sells a BM manufactured paint called "Origins". That is a big box store in Canada but they don't put the Benjamin Moore label on it.

Sherwin Williams and Valspar are more profitable than BM.

http://fortune.com/2014/09/17/warren-buffett-benjamin-moore/
 

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Here's an interesting article from 2014 about the acquisition of BM by Warren Buffett's company Berkshire Hathaway.

BM almost went into Lowes stores until Buffett stopped it. He has promised never to go into the big box stores even though that would earn the company more money.

FYI:
I did not know that Canadian Tire sells a BM manufactured paint called "Origins". That is a big box store in Canada but they don't put the Benjamin Moore label on it.

Sherwin Williams and Valspar are more profitable than BM.

http://fortune.com/2014/09/17/warren-buffett-benjamin-moore/
Very interesting article. I was perplexed when I worked at SW why they would go down this road again after they were nearly bankrupted in the 70's by selling SW branded products in K-Mart. When customer service and value is compromised, the overall brand suffers exponentially. That is why they started the Consumer Brands division, so they could sell Dutch Boy cheap and not destroy the quality brand that Sherwin wanted.
Sherwin had been approached many times, but wouldn't budge from their standards (which was admirable).
It's not like Lowe's can't have the customer service that a paint store employee should have; it's just that they normally don't have dedicated staff to run the department. The same person you talk to on a Tuesday may be in Home & Garden on Thursday.
IMO, painters that are true craftsmen like to have a dependable voice to talk to about their projects, rather than someone that is truly guessing.
Rant over...:glasses:
 

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I was an insider many years ago at SW. I believe the new goal of SW will be to convert the inside of a Lowes paint department to an SW paint store. Fully staffed by SW. This was a far off plan many years ago and now I think you will see the fruition.
 

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Exactly. They'll use lowes stores and close many of the brick and mortar stores. Sw staff and reps will handle the dept while we makes $$$ selling a mediocre product at a premium price also getting rid of a TON of operating costs.
I was an insider many years ago at SW. I believe the new goal of SW will be to convert the inside of a Lowes paint department to an SW paint store. Fully staffed by SW. This was a far off plan many years ago and now I think you will see the fruition.
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How does Lowes benefit in this senario? I don't see SW putting personnel in Lowes stores and I dont see them closing stores because of this deal with Lowes. They just want more shelf space and a larger percent of DIY market. The Lowes version of SW products will continue to be rebranded. Just my 2 cents.
 

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How does Lowes benefit in this senario? I don't see SW putting personnel in Lowes stores and I dont see them closing stores because of this deal with Lowes. They just want more shelf space and a larger percent of DIY market. The Lowes version of SW products will continue to be rebranded. Just my 2 cents.
Lowes benefits because they will loose the labor overhead on a product that is darn hard to learn without a ton of experience or a great training program, enter SW MTP program.
SW basically adds a bunch of new stores which will jump the stock price, Lowes either rents or gets a cut of the total sales that come out of that space.
 

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My $ is on them starting the shift in a year or less...

Lowes makes their $ off the profit of the productand off the labor of sw employees becoming lowes employees. Sw shrinks their overhead, still makes a hefty profit on product and doesn't have to spend it on overhead and employees and such. Keep the sw managers and dump the rest for blowes staffers. Cheaper labor.sw's 17% cut or whatever is more profit now....something like that anyway....
How does Lowes benefit in this senario? I don't see SW putting personnel in Lowes stores and I dont see them closing stores because of this deal with Lowes. They just want more shelf space and a larger percent of DIY market. The Lowes version of SW products will continue to be rebranded. Just my 2 cents.
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Well I guess we will see....I think SW is happy with it pretty much as is for now. They have Lowes exclusively buying, distributing, and selling their products. Lowes gets a better price from SW based on volume. Lowes margin per unit sold increases. Why would Lowes give any of that up? SW got what it wants by selling more gallons of paint. When SW bought Valspar they bought manufacturing capacity. SW does not care who sells Valspar or their rebranded products as long as they keep the volume increasing...I do see SW pushing the higher end more pofitable lines in Lowes. SW may train select select Lowes employees to better staff these depts and you will see more SW sinage and branding in Lowes stores but I don't think you will see many SW stores close. Big box hurt SW with DIYers. Not any more, they have exclusivity with a big chunk of that market. SW and Lowes will undoubtedly test market everything we have been thinking of. SW is dominating and PPG fires back with Home Depot however a bunch of accounting irregularities and restatement of earnings are holding them back at the moment. BW is probably selling everthing they can manufacture and won't enter the fray and continue with their good service superior quality theme. Fun to speculate but if you like small business all this makes it tougher. Hopefully Pacman and cocomonkeynuts can clone themselves a few hundred times so we will have a decent place to buy our products and service our needs.
 

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SW will not give ip their stand alone stores in my area anyways. Selling in Lowes is just another retail location for them. Why would they give up their brick and mortar locations which are in abundance to strictly sell their products in a Lowe’s home center which there aren’t many locations. Heres what I mean. There are 24 SW locations within 20miles from my home in the outer suburbs of Chicago. This does not include any Chicago locations. 1/4 of those were built within the last 2 years. And they keep adding more. I can’t imagine how many locations they have in Chicago alone but I’m talking about locations near me outside of Chicago. There are only 4 Lowes within 25 miles from me. So yeah they’re not going to give up their standalone stores to go into a few Lowe’s. Besides Lowes does not do nearly the business as Menards or Home Depot here. I am strictly a Benjamin Moore user and due to all the Sherwin-Williams locations going up, it kind of lit the match under Benjamin Moore’s behind, to start adding more locations.
 

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not to mention SW can sell off billions of $ in real estate. They own the property a large number of their stores sit on. And they save on labor, marketing expense, distribution expense, reduced inventory due to reduced sku's, and much, much more.
 

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SW will not give ip their stand alone stores in my area anyways. Selling in Lowes is just another retail location for them. Why would they give up their brick and mortar locations which are in abundance to strictly sell their products in a Lowe’s home center which there aren’t many locations. Heres what I mean. There are 24 SW locations within 20miles from my home in the outer suburbs of Chicago. This does not include any Chicago locations. 1/4 of those were built within the last 2 years. And they keep adding more. I can’t imagine how many locations they have in Chicago alone but I’m talking about locations near me outside of Chicago. There are only 4 Lowes within 25 miles from me. So yeah they’re not going to give up their standalone stores to go into a few Lowe’s. Besides Lowes does not do nearly the business as Menards or Home Depot here. I am strictly a Benjamin Moore user and due to all the Sherwin-Williams locations going up, it kind of lit the match under Benjamin Moore’s behind, to start adding more locations.
I don't see big changes in large urban areas. But for example where i am, the SW store is a couple miles from Lowe's and basically on the same street. SW owns the shopping center that their store is in, and they haven't been able to fill the store fronts in ten years. Lowe's does a pretty good business even though they are right between Home depot and menard's. To divest themselves of an under performing retail shopping center and close that store to move into Lowe's makes a lot of sense actually. They would save a bunch and would probably gain market share. Just selling the real estate makes it a move with virtually no risk to them. Trust me, the painters that buy SW in this area wouldn't buy from anyone else if they did this. They are so entrenched with SW and so used to spotty service they wouldn't even notice the difference.
 
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Well I guess we will see....I think SW is happy with it pretty much as is for now. They have Lowes exclusively buying, distributing, and selling their products. Lowes gets a better price from SW based on volume. Lowes margin per unit sold increases. Why would Lowes give any of that up? SW got what it wants by selling more gallons of paint. When SW bought Valspar they bought manufacturing capacity. SW does not care who sells Valspar or their rebranded products as long as they keep the volume increasing...I do see SW pushing the higher end more pofitable lines in Lowes. SW may train select select Lowes employees to better staff these depts and you will see more SW sinage and branding in Lowes stores but I don't think you will see many SW stores close. Big box hurt SW with DIYers. Not any more, they have exclusivity with a big chunk of that market. SW and Lowes will undoubtedly test market everything we have been thinking of. SW is dominating and PPG fires back with Home Depot however a bunch of accounting irregularities and restatement of earnings are holding them back at the moment. BW is probably selling everthing they can manufacture and won't enter the fray and continue with their good service superior quality theme. Fun to speculate but if you like small business all this makes it tougher. Hopefully Pacman and cocomonkeynuts can clone themselves a few hundred times so we will have a decent place to buy our products and service our needs.
Eventually consumers will wise up to service and product quality issues and will seek out smaller more focused stores. Convenience will only carry bad product and crappy service so far. It's only a matter of time and i hope i can last that long. Paint is not a particularly self service product, although many retailers have tried with packaged ready to go colors. But again, people want some individualism in their homes, and having 5 or 6 colors to choose from doesn't give them the individualism they want.

The issue of getting the color they want in a product that provides a high value to the consumer will always win out. Eventually. It's that eventually that is the problem. Is it 5 years? 10 years? 20 years? Who knows.

An example- There is am old school drive in restaurant in my home town that has been open since 1957. I know the current owner fairly well as i went to school with him and worked with him for a couple of years in high school. He has recently told me that the drive in has pretty much just paid for itself the last twenty years or so, as there have been many new restaurants opening near by. But this year, since they opened for the season in March, they have been breaking weekly sale records that have stood since the 70's. Word has gotten out and he is seeing a lot more traffic coming in to town from the interstate. These customers are driving past a McDonald's, Wendy's, Burger King and even a Denny's to eat at his drive-in. He said he was starting to think about retiring at the end of the summer, but if it keeps up like it is he stands to make an actual profit for the first time in years!

Hopefully that will happen to me a bit sooner than 20 years!
 

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Am I the only one left that loves independent paint stores that stock more than one brand and buy stock based on knowledge of what brands and products work best in given situations? A real annoyance to me is how some companies refuse to serve such stores. More and more one is forced to be exclusive. Their knowledge, experience and feed back from the pros they serve is invaluable! Every year there are fewer such stores and that does not serve us well. :sad:
 

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I remember overhearing Lonnie Langston and Chris Conner in the San Diego district office saying "it will be a cold day in hell before we (SW) sell OUR brand in Home Depot! Or ANY box store!" (Lonnie). "i agree 100%! That's what we have the Dutchboy brand for!" (Chris).

Of course they are both retired now.

But i still get a chuckle out of it every time i go to the Lowe's paint department.
 

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I remember overhearing Lonnie Langston and Chris Conner in the San Diego district office saying "it will be a cold day in hell before we (SW) sell OUR brand in Home Depot! Or ANY box store!" (Lonnie). "i agree 100%! That's what we have the Dutchboy brand for!" (Chris).

Of course they are both retired now.

But i still get a chuckle out of it every time i go to the Lowe's paint department.
Hell, NM has a forecast of 48 for a low tonight. Maybe that is the one they were referring to.:smile:
 

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PS: I feel sorry for young guys starting out today! My first supply store was BRILLIANT! I would even be given business advise from him ("I don't care if it's your Grandmother, have everyone sign!") He would recommend tools sometimes that I thought expensive but trusting him, I paid up. Some of those were a real blessing and I am still using some of them 40 years later! Waiting around for orders to be filled in the early morning I would see all the older, experienced painters and learned from them as well. My first big fail was a job with "too much lime in the plaster" and it bleached the paint white. One of the mature painters told me what the problem was and that shellac was the cure. I never see painters gather at the store in the mornings any more. :sad:
 

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Am I the only one left that loves independent paint stores that stock more than one brand and buy stock based on knowledge of what brands and products work best in given situations? A real annoyance to me is how some companies refuse to serve such stores. More and more one is forced to be exclusive. Their knowledge, experience and feed back from the pros they serve is invaluable! Every year there are fewer such stores and that does not serve us well. :sad:
I find that most of the small independent store personnel I deal with treat me with indifference if I'm not on their preferred list of painters or contractors. Which I don't consider myself on any preferred list. They also seem to want to challenge my painting knowledge as if we're in competition or something. I could care less if they know more. I just want a pleasant experience when I go into the store.

Stores like Kelly Moore used to be cool. There'd be coffee and the person behind the counter was actually happy to see you. Now a days, either they're making you suffer a wait while they tend to the DYI'er that wants a crash course in the painting trade, or schmoozing with a hack painter that low balls to the point where he's the top material purchaser at the store.

If I could have all the material delivered to me and never have to engage with the store personnel, that would be just fine.
 

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I find that most of the small independent store personnel I deal with treat me with indifference if I'm not on their preferred list of painters or contractors. Which I don't consider myself on any preferred list. They also seem to want to challenge my painting knowledge as if we're in competition or something. I could care less if they know more. I just want a pleasant experience when I go into the store.

Stores like Kelly Moore used to be cool. There'd be coffee and the person behind the counter was actually happy to see you. Now a days, either they're making you suffer a wait while they tend to the DYI'er that wants a crash course in the painting trade, or schmoozing with a hack painter that low balls to the point where he's the top material purchaser at the store.

If I could have all the material delivered to me and never have to engage with the store personnel, that would be just fine.
Unfortunately this is the way the world is going. People just want to show up, do the minimum amount of work, engage customers as little as possible, and get their paycheck. And get $15.00 an hour to do it. You can most definitely blame the box stores for this! Trust me, i know that first hand.
 
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Dealing with JC Licht in Illinois as my BM supplier, has been nothing but a stellar experience. I bounce around 5 differrent locations and they all treat me with the upmost respect and courtesy. They value my experience due to my all my years in this trade. There always interested in my opinion and my feedback on products. They even come to me when trying to troubleshoot issues for some of their clientele. They are very knowledgeable but never come off as they know it all and find it enriching to have outside opinion to further their own knowledge. The one thing I’ve noticed that changed with independent paint stores over the many years, it used to be something to look forward to in the mornings to go buy your paint at these places because of the commodery with the other painters. Today there is almost no socializing with other painters. It’s like you’re one of their enemies just because you’re in the same business rather than sharing that common bond. It’s really sad how things are today.
 

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@PACman - enjoyed the story about the old school Drive-In....I think the changes will be gradual and are hopefully occuring now. The more the big boxes over promise and underdeliver the better off we will be. I fear, however, they have already lowered the bar on what a quality paint job is. The DIYer struts around thinking they have knocked it out of the park when most of the time it's only a foul ball. @CApainter - you can bet Amazon has considered delivering paint and sundries directly to the job site. Maybe they will buy PPG like they did Whole Foods. SW already has a bunch of Ford Econolines delivering product around here. There are probably 3,000 or more stick built homes going up in a 20 mile radius. Plus all the new hotels and hotel repaints. How do you say gallonage! How do you say PaintersEdge!
 
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