Home Depot makes a big purchase
Industry officials are taking note of this week’s announcement by The Home Depot Inc. that it will buy product distributor Hughes Supply Inc. for about $3.2 billion.
Hughes Supply is a distributor of construction, repair and maintenance products. While construction distribution has a small impact on the industrial sector, the rapidly-growing industrial maintenance sector could be a future growth target for Home Depot, providing a challenge for existing industrial maintenance suppliers.
In the short-term, Home Depot gets a boost for its already-growing home supply division, aided by Hughes’ existing 500 location network in 40 states.
"By acquiring Hughes Supply, a company with a long and established reputation for excellence and service, we continue to execute our growth strategy laid out five years ago to enhance our core retail business, extend our business into adjacent areas and expand into new markets," said Bob Nardelli, chairman, president and chief executive of Home Depot.
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Annual Salary Survey
Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.
There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.
But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.
Read more: 2015 Salary Survey