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5. Ace Hardware

Last Year's Rank: 6

Investment Range: $272,500 - $1,574,230

Initial Franchise Fee: $5,000

Category: Retail

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Company Description

Ace Hardware is the largest retailer-owned hardware cooperative in the world. Although it is considered a franchised business since independent owners operate most of its locations, Ace is formally a retailers' cooperative.

Founded in 1924 in the Chicago area, Ace Hardware stores vary in size and product offerings to fit each neighborhood. Ace operates in more than 5,000 locations in all 50 states and over 60 countries.

Ace franchisees are not only business owners, but also shareholders in the organization. The hardware chain also offers an option to convert stores from existing independent stores to an Ace Hardware store.

Company Statistics

Global Sales: $16,632,000,000

US Units: 4,599

International Units: 777

Total Units: 5,376

Percent Franchised: 83%

% International Units: 14%

US Franchised Units: 4,476

Sales Growth %: 4.0%

Unit Growth %: 2.8%

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