Martin and Kathleen Clark, owners and operators of Martin’s Hardware & Building Supply in Bristol and Middlebury, Vermont, have agreed to sell their business to the Aubuchon Company, the oldest and largest family-owned hardware store chain in America.
“Martin and Kathleen have been serving friends, neighbors and employees for nearly 28 years as owners. I’m inspired by their passion for people and dedication to building up their business,” says William E. Aubuchon, IV, president & CEO of the Aubuchon Company. “It’s important to pause and salute the long successful careers of Martin and Kathleen—congratulations to you both!”
Following the closing this fall, the Aubuchon Company will operate 110 stores in eight states.
“We are so grateful for the loyalty and support of our customers and cannot begin to say how incredibly thankful we are to have had the pleasure of working alongside so many dedicated and caring people who have always put customer service and our business above anything else,” says Kathleen Clark. “Our team has become part of our family. Without them, Martin’s Hardware would not be what it is today. They have been the core of our business, and our success is a huge reflection of their efforts and abilities.”
Martin and Kathleen Clark purchased the store in 1995. The company originally started with six employees and has grown to more than 35 people across three locations in Vermont.
“We have loved being involved in our community for so many years, and it is bittersweet to end our careers but the time is right for us to move on and give the stores the ability to continue to grow under new ownership,” says Martin Clark. “We feel like Aubuchon has the ability to do just that. They are family run for 114 years with similar values. They are committed to their business, but more importantly to their employees and communities in which they serve. We look forward to supporting our team through this transition so that our customers and community will continue to be supported for many years to come.”
The store in Bristol, Vermont, will continue to operate as Martin’s Hardware & Building Supply. The existing Aubuchon Hardware store in Middlebury, Vermont, (1.5 miles away from Martin’s) will merge into the Martin’s location in Middlebury, Vermont. The new combined store will be rebranded as Aubuchon Hardware. A third store operated by Martin’s in Brattleboro, Vermont, is not part of the acquisition and will close.
“We’ll soon be officially welcoming the Martin’s team to the Aubuchon family. We work hard, take care of each other and have fun,” Aubuchon says. “We couldn’t be more excited to carry on the legacy of Martin’s Hardware!”