Ace Hardware to sell Craftsman tools

Ace Hardware and Sears Holdings announced jointly on Feb. 19 that Craftsman products, until now the exclusive brand of Sears and Kmart stores, will soon become available through Ace Hardware stores.

Under the initial phase of the agreement, 100 Ace stores will offer an assortment of Craftsman hand tools, portable power tools, compressors, wet/dry vacs and tool storage this May. The following month, Ace will promote a number of Craftsman products, giving all 4,500 Ace stores the opportunity to offer the Craftsman brand to customers.

"This is an exciting, strategic move that expands access to Craftsman for existing and new customers," said Bruce Johnson, interim CEO and president for Sears Holdings. "Offering an assortment of Craftsman products more broadly through Ace locations will strengthen the Craftsman brand, which already has an incredible reputation for innovation, quality and trust.”

The press release made no mention of which 100 stores would be part of the initial rollout or how Ace would handle Craftsman’s renowned lifetime guarantee for its hand tools.