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It was certainly a risk, but third-generation dealer David Goldberg knew he had to do something about declining sales in his Bethesda, Md., hardware store, according to an article in the Washington Post. After visiting a trade show in Germany in 2008 and buying a luxurious sink, Goldberg installed it in Union Hardware and watched his customers’ reactions.
Three years later and several more buying trips to Europe under his belt, Goldberg has transformed his 97-year-old hardware store into a showroom of sinks, tubs, showers and toilets, including a $7,300 black model that opens automatically and plays a variety of music.
While there have been bumps in the road -- retraining sales staff to become familiar with European styles, for example -- Goldberg said he's doing better than he was in the early months of the recession.