Where in the world is Steve?
It’s a three-country day. We began in Antwerp, Belgium visiting our friends at Brico Alliance at the Hubo offices to discuss which of the nine-member organizations (small to mid-size EUROPEAN DIY retailers) will participate in a test market for a new vendor.
From there we drove to Amsterdam to meet with one of the logistics solutions that have helped Council members and discuss how they may handle spare parts, less than container quantities, customer service calls and B2C shipments for this supplier. Afterward, we made the long drive to Germany for tomorrow’s meeting.
I’m in Chandlers Ford, England today at the Kingfisher “mothership”. They are the largest DIY Group in Europe with chains such as B&Q (UK) and Castorama (France) and annual sales north of $11 Billion.
Having recently made to decision to reorganize purchasing under the Kingfisher banner and bring the entire group to 90% corporate-wide suppliers by 2020, they asked us to talk to them about how we may help identify innovative suppliers from North America which will now be handled through the U.K. office.
From there Daniela and I drove to Toledo, OH for another Buying Day with one of the country’s largest and oldest DIY distributors, Bostwick-Braun. You may notice an upgrade in photography – that would be talent, which Daniela possesses and I do not. We were greeted with friendly faces and snow flurries and introduced 30 suppliers to their buyers. I am on my way back to South Florida to change out my bag and head out Saturday for the next Hardware-related “adventure”!