How To Start ACE Hardware Corporation in USA- Cost, Profits, Eligibility

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Ace Hardware Corporation Franchise in USA: Understanding The Cost & Application Process


Hardware stores have long been seen as an essential retail business. Not only for consumers, but it also offers appreciable returns to owners. In fact, the revenue from hardware business increased from $29.36 billion in 2019 to $35.39 billion in 2020 in the United States, which suggests it’s high time to invest in this emerging business model.   


At the same time, the good news for entrepreneurs looking for a highly profitable business is that franchise opportunities abound in the hardware business, and the Ace Hardware Corporation, the oldest Hardware company in the USA, offers a tremendous opportunity for those looking to build a profitable and lasting business. 


So, do you intend to own an Ace Hardware franchise in USA? But still unclear about the application process, fees & investment. Don’t worry; In this article, we’ll review Ace Hardware’s franchise model, financial requirements, and application process. 


Ace Hardware Corporation Franchise in USA: A Brief History & Future Prospects


Richard Hesse, E. Gunnard Lindquist, Frank Burke, and Oscar Fisher started the Ace Hardware company in 1924. As the business grew and established a solid reputation for itself, it started franchising. 


The plan of becoming a cooperative of retailers developed into a viable opportunity. Currently, there are more than 5858 Ace hardware stores open worldwide. Additionally, Ace is the world’s biggest retailer-owned appliance cooperative. 


They provide fantastic prospects for people who wish to create a successful and long-lasting business. The company was started with a name – Ace Stores, which was renamed lately.  


The store’s popularity skyrocketed after World War II, with sales soaring to more than tripled between the late 1940s and 1959. 


Additionally, Ace became a retailer-owned cooperative after Richard Hesse, its longtime president and founder, departed in 1973 and sold the company to its retailers. Its wholesale sales reached their high in 1985 at $1 billion and in 2015 at $5 billion. 


Today, Ace has stores in China, Panama, and the United Arab Emirates, in addition to its 17 US distribution centers. At the same time, the franchisor generates nearly $16 billion in sales. 


Ace Hardware Franchise Model: Information


Estimated Initial Investment  

$292,000- $2,119,230 


Franchise Fee  $5,000 
Royalty-Fee  N\A 
Liquidity Capital  $250,000 
Area Requirement  N\A 
Total Outlets  5858 Stores 


How To Invest In Ace Hardware Corporation Franchise in USA?

There are three ways to become a member of the ever-growing Ace Hardware family: Owning An Ace Store, Converting Your Existing Store to Ace, and Adding Ace to your Grocery Store.  


Open A New Ace Store 

The best way to grab a highly profitable business opportunity is to open a New Ace Hardware Corporation Franchise in USA. The initial cost to set up a new Ace Hardware Corporation Franchise in USA is estimated between $292,000- $2,119,230. 

Each Ace Hardware store offers significant revenue, features, and outstanding support. In most cases, Ace stores compete with big boxes by offering exceptional service and a convenient hardware store experience. 



  • No Franchise Fees  
  • No Royalty Fees   
  • You Own the Brand 


Converting Existing Store to Ace 

When you convert your store to Ace Hardware, the company creates a success road map for you. Rewards are based on Discovery-recommended products and amounts and vary by shop type and size. In addition, the company rewards in the form of credit rather than money or a loan. 


Additionally, Ace offers a team of professionals who can help you convert and manage a profitable business. Franchisees benefit from the assistance and expertise of a committed and knowledgeable staff that offers in-depth training to assist you in successfully entering the “DIY” consumer market. 



  • Additional product assortment incentive opportunities 
  • Upfront incentives to get you started! 
  • Free labor to bin-tag the entire store! 
  • Free Ace Paint/Clark & Kensington opening stock order 


Add Ace To Your Grocery Store 

If you’re an owner of a successful grocery store, Ace Hardware is giving you a chance to join its network by adding Ace products to your store.  



  • Free Initial Inventory 
  • Attracts new high-margin customers 
  • No Franchise Fees  
  • No Royalty Fees   


What Is The Estimated Cost Of Setting Up Ace Hardware Corporation Franchise in USA?


As a profitable business opportunity, Ace Hardware Corporation has emerged among the top choices of entrepreneurs. However, the initial cost may have a great impact on your decision.  

The cost of setting up a new franchise or converting an existing store varies depending on various factors. After analyzing the detailed FDD of the company, below is the breakdown of all the costs, fees & charges:  


Estimated Initial Investment for Opening A New Ace Hardware Corporation Franchise in USA:


The cost for opening a new Ace hardware franchise varies whether you’re opening a store on leased premises or constructing a new building. Here’s a detailed overview of the initial cost in each situation.  


New Construction:

Initial Investment/Cost Maximum Minimum 
Initial Franchise Fee – Affiliation Fee  $5,000  $5,000  
Initial Brand Assessment (advertising)  $6,000  $12,000  
Capital Stock Subscription  $5,000  $5,000  
Interior Decor  $15,000  $32,000 
Exterior Signage  $5,000  



Real Property Purchase Costs – Building $60,000  



Real Property Purchase Costs – Land  $15,000  $200,000 
Fixtures, Decorating, Construction Costs, and Other Improvements  $24,000  



Telephone and other Equipment  $10,000  $20,000  
Prepaid Expenses – Permits, Subscriptions, Security Deposit, Dues, and other Prepaid Expenses  $3,000  $15,000 
Computer System with Point-of-Sale (Hardware/Software)  $45,000  $85,000  
Opening Inventory  $150,000  $1,000,000 
Insurance  $2,500  $30,000 
Initial Supplies  $500  $2,500 
Additional Funds – Working capital for the first 3 months  $15,000  



New Investor Retail Training  $0 



ESTIMATED TOTAL  $361,000  $2,119,230 


Leased Premises

Initial Investment/Cost Minimum Maximum 
Initial Franchise Fee – Affiliation Fee  $5,000  $5,000  

Initial Brand Assessment (advertising)  








Capital Stock Subscription  $5,000  $5,000  
Leasehold Improvements – Decorating, Furniture and Fixtures ($9 per sq. ft.)  $27,000  



Signage – Exterior Signage  $5,000  $35,000 
Telephone, In-store Communications and Other Equipment  $10,000  $20,000  
Signage – Interior Decor  $15,000  $32,000  
Computer System with Point-of-Sale (Hardware/Software)  $45,000  



Rent – First 3 months  $3,000  $60,000 
Prepaid Expenses – Permits, Subscriptions, Security Deposit, Dues, and other Prepaid Expenses  $3,000  $15,000  
Opening Inventory  $150,000  $1,000,000 
Initial Supplies  $500  $2,500  
New Investor Retail Training  $0  



Additional Funds – Working capital for the first 90 days  $15,000  



Insurance  $2,500  $30,000 
ESTIMATED TOTAL  $292,000  $1,624,230 


Estimated Initial Investment for Converting Existing Store To Ace


Initial Cost Maximum Minimum 
Capital Stock Subscription  $5,000  $5,000  
Exterior Signage  $5,000  $35,000 
Initial Brand Assessment (advertising)  



Telephone, In-store Communications and Other Equipment  $0  



Interior Decor  $15,000  $32,000 
Computer System with Point-of-Sale (Hardware/Software)  $8,000  



Initial Supplies  $0  $2,500 
Opening Inventory  $0  $600,000 
Insurance  $0  $30,000 
New Investor Retail Training  $0  $37,730 
Decorating – Decorating. Furniture and Fixtures ($1 per sq. ft)  $3,000  $15,000  
ESTIMATED TOTAL  $42,000  $864,230 


How To Apply For Ace Hardware Corporation Franchise In USA?


The process of applying for a new Ace Hardware Corporation Franchise in USA is not as daunting as it seems. Additionally, the franchisor team’s support makes the process even more convenient.  


Follow these simple steps to apply for the Ace Hardware franchise:  


Preview & Qualification:  


The first step is to determine whether you’re a qualified candidate or not. The company has set stringent eligibility criteria for selecting new applications. Here are some eligibility criteria set by the company: 

  • Hard worker 
  • Management organization skills 
  • Good communication skills and sales skills 
  • Track Record of Success 
  • Leadership Quality 
  • Must know about marketing 


Market Research


This is the most crucial step and may have a more significant impact on your long-term success. It includes market identification, site selection, sale forecast, and proforma.  


Submit Your Application


Firstly, read the company’s Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD) and send a proposal to the company by submitting an application form available on the website.  


Prepare For Store Development


Once our application gets processed and selected by the Franchisor, the concerned team will contact you. Attend a meeting with them and understand all the terms, conditions, and your duties.  


Following that, prepare for your store development, which includes Store planning, opening stock order, and store set-up.  


Store Opening & Training


After all the hard work, it’s time to enjoy the success. Get ready for the store opening and the grand opening event.  


What Type Of Training Does Ace Hardware Corporation Offer To Its Franchisees?


The company offers virtual, in-person, and personal training at its headquarters in Oak and a few other regional locations. 

Before opening the store, the new investor who does not already own an Ace Hardware franchise must complete the Base Camp New Investor program. 


For investors’ training, there are more than 1600 courses accessible. In addition, the investors can schedule training sessions for certain stores. 


The firm also hosts training sessions and workshops on subjects of interest to store managers and owners twice a year. The training program will help franchises in:  

  • Purchasing and inventory strategies 
  • Implementing helpful customer service 
  • Hiring, training, and managing employees 
  • Effective store marketing techniques 
  • Strategies and management of each revenue center 
  • Financial management and “back office” procedures 


What Are The Privileges Of Owning A Ace Hardware Corporation Franchise In USA?


The company’s business model allows franchisees to run Ace stores with confidence by providing the following resources and competitive advantages: 

  • Low cost of goods for increased margins & greater profitability 
  • Stock ownership 
  • Strategic and business management support 
  • Retail Operations and Marketing support 
  • Operational flexibility 
  • Exclusive licensing rights 
  • Globally recognized brand 
  • New store incentives – up to $330,000* 
  • No royalty fees and a portion of the company profits are distributed back to the retail owners each year 
  • Independent ownership with dedicated training & support 




The Ace Hardware corporation’s business strategy is based entirely on adaptability. As a result, the company offers a basic support system that you can use to manage your business in your particular local market. 


The Ace Hardware franchise Team, which consists of owners, store employees, retail support staff, and corporate staff, numbers more than 80,000 people. Ace International has more than 130 individuals who are entirely responsible for providing services to international retailers.  


Owning and running an Ace Franchise provides a number of distinct benefits, including shared inventions, corporate marketing knowledge, cutting-edge retailing design, a robust global supply chain, etc. 


A Tennessee Retail Group Owns and operates Ace Hardware Corporation.

There are more than 4,647 Ace Hardware stores operating in The United States.

New investors of Ace Hardware Franchise can expect a franchise fee of $5000, and they need an initial investment of $292,000- $2,119,230

Yes, the company has been franchising for a long time. In fact, Ace Hardware is a retailer-owned cooperative with the majority of store locations controlled by independent owners.

Ace Hardware is a profitable business opportunity to own because the income from a franchise can be well over $80,000 per year. 

The franchise’s revenue and profitability include local demand for your product, labor expenses, commercial lease rates, and various other factors. 

No, the franchisor does not offer a veteran discount. 

No, the Ace Hardware franchise is not looking for International franchisees. 

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