December 2 ACE Hardware store opened its doors to the public. “My wife was the first customer. She bought a mop and a bucket,” said Shawn Hyde, the ACE’s general manger. Hyde purchased the Ace Hardware franchise rights to Bay Islands in 2009, but delayed opening the store that year due to unstable economic outlook in the country and Bay Islands. “[Now] we feel that Roatan is on the rebound,” says Hyde.
According to Yvette Hyde, store’s manager, there are around 8,000 items that are showcased on the showroom floor, but the assortment of items will change and adjust to match the client demand. The entire 60,000 Ace items that are showcased on the Ace hardware website can be ordered at the store and, according to Hyde, should arrive at the store in about 10 days. The once-a-week supply boat from Miami will be bringing the items to a French Harbour dock just 50 meters from the store.
The floor of the store is divided into several departments: there is a paint store and several thousand feet of shelf space displaying anything from BBQ sets to ladders and lamps. “You can bring a photo of your home and we can show you how it would look painted with a new color,” says Shawn Hyde. “We’ll even store the info so when you’ll come a few years later we can match the color you originally purchased.”
There are six Ace Hardware stores on Honduras’ mainland, but according to Hyde, this is the only store that was designed as an actual Ace Hardware store in the US. The 10,700 square foot store employs 15 people on the floor and another four outside the building.n [/private]