For the last 10 years I have always started the new year’s product reviews with showing you what Craftsman has to offer. This year will be no different. But first I want to state my opinion of the sale of the Craftsman brand to Stanley Black & Decker. The sale was announced on January 5, 2017 but I wanted to wait a few weeks for the dust to settle. You may read the press release here: Stanley Black & Decker Reaches Agreement To Purchase Craftsman Brand From Sears Holdings
This is a win/win for Craftsman! Why? Sears has always been one of those very unique companies that not only sold just about everything made, but over the years engineered and manufactured (or farmed it out) many of the items. No other retailer I am aware of has product engineers. But this uniqueness has left Sears strapped for cash many times over the years. (The lead time from engineering to placing on the store shelves can be years) It’s one of those underlying issues that has driven the newspapers crazy. They always treated Sears like a retail box store – but it wasn’t and it drove them nuts when the company didn’t roll over and die. This new ownership will allow Sears to become the retailer it should transform into and will allow the Craftsman brand to flourish.
The rest of this article is a bullet list of what I got out of the press release. The facts are directly from Stanley Black & Decker but I’ve changed some of the words to make it read better.
An Investment In Organic Growth
Stanley Black & Decker To Purchase Craftsman Brand From Sears Holdings…
• Obtaining Rights To Develop, Manufacture And Sell Craftsman Brand In Non-Sears Retail, Industrial & Online Channels
• Sears To Continue Developing, Sourcing & Selling Craftsman In All Sears Retail Channels Under Perpetual License Agreement
• SBD To Significantly Increase Availability And Innovation Of Craftsman Products And Add Manufacturing In the U.S. To Support Growth
…Enhances Company’s Rich Brand Portfolio With Addition Of Iconic Craftsman Brand
The Craftsman Brand Today:
- Iconic Brand Within U.S. In Power & Hand Tools And Storage Products
- High Brand Awareness
- Strong Presence In Lawn & Garden
- External Sears Sales – Predominantly Through Ace Hardware
- Diverse & Complementary Product Lines
The Craftsman Brand Today:
Stanley Black & Decker stated in their press release that Craftsman is a Strong Brand With High Retail / Industrial Channel Customer Interest.
Sears And Sears-Related Channels make up about 90% of Retail Sales of the Craftsman brand.
How the Craftsman product sales break down.
- Sears~65% Of Retail Sales
- Sears Hometown ~20% Of Retail Sales.*Sears Hometown Is A Separate Publicly Traded Company (NASDAQ: SHOS) That Sells Sears Merchandise
- Kmart ~5% Of Retail Sales
- External Accounts like Ace ~10% of Retail Sales
What’s In This For You?
Craftsman & U.S. Manufacturing Base Expansion
- Expand distribution to new and existing non-Sears Retail & E-Commerce Channels
- Expanded “Made In The USA”
- Expand manufacturing in the USA.
- Greatly expand the product line.
- Potential to license the Craftsman L&G brand to Outdoor Manufactures.
- Sell Craftsman branded products through dealer networks.
- Sears will continue to sell Craftsman and won’t have to pay royalties for 15 years.
Overall, there are a lot of questions about this sale and very few of them have been answered since the press release but I am extremely positive about this sale. In my opinion this sale solidifies what I have been saying all along. Craftsman isn’t going to disappear anytime soon.
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