Kenroy employees buy Hunter Lighting
Thomas Russell -- Casual Living, March 17, 2008
The new company, Kenroy Home, will sell an expanded range of lighting and home decor products to a variety of distribution channels under the Kenroy Home brand. It will also sell Hunter-branded lighting to a select group of accounts, under license from Hunter Fan.
Bob Pape, group president of the Hunter Lighting Group from 1993 to 2005, and most recently president of Hunter’s Business Innovation Group, returned to the business in November 2007 to lead the buyout effort. He heads up the Kenroy Home team of industry veterans, who have a combined tenure of more than 250 years with the company.
“Becoming the first employee-owned lighting company, purchased with our own sweat equity and savings, is a dream come true for the hard-working Kenroy family, many of whom preceded Hunter’s ownership in the late 1980’s,” said Pape. “It’s a great day for our dedicated team, and for our customer partners, who’ll see greater speed, increased customer focus, and timely expansion of our product categories.”
Hunter Fan will continue to provide world-class logistics, warehouse, and distribution services to Kenroy Home, from its corporate distribution facility in Byhalia, Miss. As in the past, Kenroy Home will continue to operate its own product development, sales, marketing, customer service, credit, and administration infrastructure in Jacksonville. The new arrangement provides advantages to both companies, who will continue to cooperate in several sales, marketing and logistical areas.
“As an independent entity, Kenroy Home will be more nimble and proactive in expanding into new product categories, and will focus on marketing to customers who appreciate our emphasis on design and value-added services,” said Pape.