Mt. Hope Hardware changes ownership, remains a community cornerstone

DGKN staff report

MT. HOPE  Mt. Hope Hardware, in the heart of the Mt. Hope community, is changing ownership from Lehman’s Hardware in Kidron to Keim, a fourth-generation family-owned business in Charm, Ohio.

Months ago, longtime friends and business leaders, Galen Lehman, CEO of Lehman’s, and Jim Smucker, president of Keim, met for lunch, according to a news release from Keim. In casual conversation, it soon became apparent that as a hardware store, Mt. Hope could be a good fit for Keim.

“This will allow us to focus on Lehman’s core brand of helping people to lead a more self-sufficient and simple life,” Glenda Lehman Ervin, vice president of marketing at Lehman’s, said in the news release. Although once very similar, Lehman’s and Mt. Hope Hardware evolved in different directions over time.

Keim is one of the region’s largest family-owned lumber, home, and hardware stores, and Mt. Hope Hardware will benefit from Keim’s enhanced products and services in the long-term, the news release states. In the meantime, day-to-day operations will remain the same. Mt. Hope Hardware will remain a leader in gas refrigeration sales and service. There are no plans for a name change, and most importantly customers will continue to see the same friendly employees, the news release continues.

“We want what’s best for the local community and the local economy,” Smucker said in the release.  Both Mt. Hope Hardware and Keim carry many of the same products, have a culture steeped in family values, and serve the local community.

“The partnership at Keim will be good for our customers at Mt. Hope,” John Steiner, store manager at Mt. Hope Hardware, said in the news release. “We appreciate customers’ patience as we transition to this new working relationship over the next number of months.”

“Mt. Hope Hardware has a great reputation and we are excited about this opportunity in Mt. Hope,” Robbie Keim, an owner of the family business, said in the release.

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