A hardware store that has been around since 1944 has found itself a new owner.
Speier Ace Hardware, a 70-year-old institution at 992 Barret Ave., is recently acquired by Joda Pyle, the owner of a California-based skateboard company called Goomby.
Pyle, a Louisville native, walked into the store and realized he wanted to buy it. After opening an ill-fated gallery in the same town, the Goomby owner is looking to redeem himself.
“I really want to have a good reputation in Louisville. The hardware store is the heart of the community, it’s been going since 1944. And I know I can keep it going,” Pyle was quoted as saying.
Now that the hardware store has a new owner, you’ll expect expansion and new product lines to be offered to the public. According to the official site of Goomby, the company is planning to add “urban street retail catering to skateboarders and graffiti artists.”
What’s more, Pyle is also looking to expand the Speier Ace Hardware’s lumber supply in order to meet the demand of the customers. And from now on, aside from cash, the customers will be able to exchange unused gift cards.
Of course, the changes won’t be limited to the products, the store itself will undergo cosmetic overhaul from floor to ceiling and anything that needs renovation. If you think the ongoing reconstruction will disrupt the flow of operation of the store, no worries. Pyle said customers will still be able to go to the store as it’s going to be an open renovation.
You can expect the renovation to take six months to a year though, to make sure that the disruption is kept to a minimum.
Former Speier Ace Hardware owner Kevin Katz, whose father-in-law opened the store back in 1944, has bitter-sweet feelings selling the store. He said, “I’m happy and I’m sad. I’m sad that I have to leave, there’s a lot of good, loyal customers. I’ve been there 41 years, so I’ve known some of them for 41 years. But everybody understands that there comes a time when you have to say goodbye, you have to turn the page.”