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Hackett’s to become public company

Hackett’s Hardware Stores, the Ogdensburg, N.Y.-based chain of department stores with full service True Value Hardware departments, will become a stand-alone, publicly traded company, under a move by its parent company, Seaway Valley Capital Corp. (SVCC).

Company officials said the move is intended to raise money for investment and operations. “With its growing sales and assets, we felt that bringing Hackett’s out as a stand-alone entity will help both unlock the value of Hackett’s to Seaway’s shareholders and also make it easier for Hackett’s to directly access the capital markets for growth and financial stability,” said Thomas Scozzafava, president of SVCC.

SVCC recently agreed to acquire approximately 88 percent of the voting securities of Florida-based Americas Learning Centers and transferred its shares of Hackett’s into the company. As part of the transaction, Hackett's will change its name to Hackett’s Store Incorporated.

“After significant investment into Hackett’s by Seaway Valley, we feel this is the right time to position Hackett’s for a considerable capital raise, of which certain proceeds may be used to repay indebtedness at the Seaway Valley level,” Scozzafava said. Seaway Valley has current assets of more than $35 million and $8 million in shareholder equity and recently announced the exploration of strategic alternatives including debt and equity restructuring and the eventual monetization of certain of its holdings.

Hackett’s announced recently that it would open in its 11th location in Sackets Harbor, N.Y. The company is one of the nation’s oldest retailers with roots dating back to 1830. Each of its larger stores contains a True Value hardware department with hardware, tools, plumbing, paint and electrical departments. Other departments in the stores include men’s, women’s and children’s brand name apparel, athletic, casual and work footwear, home decor, gifts, seasonal merchandise and sporting goods.

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