Welcome to Las Vegas and to the 2018 National Hardware Show®!

For more than seven decades, the National Hardware Show has united the home improvement industry, bringing together retailers, manufacturers, associations, key industry figures and others to preview products and share ideas that can revolutionize the industry.

This year, more than 2,600 exhibitors—including more than 500 first-time exhibitors—are presenting their latest innovations. Alongside these new products, attendees can take a virtual tour of a fully equipped smart home with the Smart Home Virtual Reality Experience, explore a tiny home and products provided by HSN that fit in these small spaces, relax and review outdoor living products in the Ultimate Backyard and much, much more. With a focus on emerging home improvement products, key industry trends and a constant commitment to uniting channel leaders, the National Hardware Show has distinguished itself as the industry’s leading event.

The National Hardware Show invites you to take full advantage of the products, insights and events taking place here at the Las Vegas Convention Center over the next few days.

Read on to find more information about the brand-new additions to the National Hardware Show, as well as the returning favorites.


Reimagine Retail Takes on Technology

The Reimagine Retail program aims to empower independent business owners across the country. Now in its second year, the program has a fresh focus on how technology can improve independent home improvement centers. Retailers were invited to submit their ideas on how to improve their operations through innovative technology.  

A panel of judges reviewed the submissions to find the 2018 Reimagine Retail winner. On Wednesday, May 9, one lucky retailer will leave Las Vegas with $100,000 to make their business improvement plan a reality. Don’t miss a minute of the action!


A New Look, a Refreshed Focus

This year, the National Hardware Show has a new look and a renewed focus on delivering exactly what retailers and hardware and home improvement professionals need to thrive. The Show has updated its branding to communicate its mission of keeping retailers in the know and ahead of the competition.

The new logo is an abstract representation of a bolt, one of the most quintessential pieces of hardware. The bolt is a common denominator in every facet of hardware and home improvement products. It’s also the perfect symbol for the National Hardware Show because, much like the bolt, the Show is the tool that powers your business. 


The North American Retail Hardware Association’s (NRHA) annual conference is a hub of activity right at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Registered attendees of the National Hardware Show® can attend the Conference for free for educational sessions, networking opportunities and an inside look at the independent home improvement industry.

NRHA helps independent home improvement retailers, regardless of wholesale affiliation, become better and more profitable merchants through a variety of resources, including training, networking and industry events. The annual Conference, held in conjunction with the National Hardware Show, is a cornerstone of the association’s programming. 


Presentations for the Industry

At this year’s event, NRHA has slated a robust lineup of expert speakers and retailer panels, including three keynotes to take place over the first two days of the Conference.

To help guide attendees into the sessions that are most relevant to their businesses, NRHA planned presentations around four strategic focus areas: small business management, technology, retail trends and the future of the industry. 

“NRHA provides resources, including industry research and training, for retailers all year long, and the presentations at the NRHA All-Industry Conference are another element of those tools,” says NRHA president and CEO Bob Cutter. “The expert speakers at this year’s event will offer attendees a broad spectrum of takeaways they can apply to their businesses.”

Here is an overview of all of the presenters who will take the stage tomorrow in the NRHA Village, the home of the Conference.
  • The first keynote of the event starts at 11:30 a.m., and you’ll want to be there. The stars of HGTV’s hit show “Good Bones,” Karen E Laine and Mina Starsiak Hawk, will talk about how a hobby as mother and daughter became a career. Stick around for a meet-and-greet with the duo after their presentation.
  • Jules Pieri, co-founder and CEO of The Grommet, is tomorrow's second keynote. Find out how her business started, learn about the company’s new relationship with Ace Hardware and discover how she and her team identify the next hot products.
  • Andrea Ridout, author and former independent retailer, will discuss how she successfully grew and then sold three home improvement businesses. Find out how a rooster helped her make the best decisions for her business.
  • A group of retailers takes the stage tomorrow morning for a panel discussion about being a young person in today’s home improvement retail industry. Hear from current and former NRHA Young Retailer of the Year honorees.
  • For insight into the second Reimagine Retail program, sponsored by the National Hardware Show, attend a panel tomorrow afternoon with the five finalists. Hear about their plans for how they will spend $100,000 if they go home with the grand prize.
  • Research is always a compelling part of the conference. Jim Robisch, senior partner at home improvement research firm The Farnsworth Group, will talk about what different generations expect from independent retailers online.
  • The final presentation on Tuesday comes from Daniel Duty, CEO and founder of Conlego. Learn from Duty, a former Target executive, how to engage in collaborative forms of negotiation and form successful partnerships between retailers and suppliers.

Get Ready for Round 2

The excitement doesn’t stop in the NRHA Village on Wednesday. With more industry-specific research, a keynote from TreeHouse founder Jason Ballard, and an afternoon full of awards, each presentation will leave you inspired and ready to take action in your own business. 


More than 2,600 exhibitors from 60 countries across 15-plus categories. Thousands of new products in special featured product display areas. A full slate of speakers and awards programs. You can find all this, and more, this week at the National Hardware Show®.

There's plenty to see and do tomorrow, Wednesday and Thursday, so make the most of your time at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Read on to learn more about what you’ll find across the Show floor.


What's New

You’ll find a number of categories, including Building Products; Hardware & Tools; Homewares; Lawn, Garden & Outdoor Living; Paint & Accessories and more, at the Show. Among these categories are products that represent popular consumer trends, such as Pet Products, Emergency Preparedness & Disaster Recovery, Energy Efficient, Farm & Ranch, Made in USA and Smart Home.
  • The NHS Mobile App can get you where you need to go, and the My Show and Match Me tools will help ensure you find the exhibitors that best suit your needs, attend can’t-miss events and more, all without missing a beat.
  • The Smart Home trend continues to grow, as more and more consumers look to the home of the future. This year, the Smart Home Virtual Reality Experience will allow attendees to experience firsthand all that a smart home has to offer. Find this display in the Central Lobby.
  • The Ultimate Backyard presents the latest and greatest in outdoor living and grilling. Step outside to Tailgate, Backyard & BBQ in the Silver Parking Lot in Booth #Outdoor550 to find an opportunity to test these products in a real backyard!
  • Also in the Silver Lot, find Operation Tiny Home, in Booth #Outdoor851, which has partnered with the National Hardware Show to highlight emerging trends in tiny and container home construction. The two organizations will work together to help Las Vegas-area veterans learn furniture-building skills. All attendees are invited to see the finished product. Explore a tiny home and experience the latest products that fit in these small spaces.

Networking Opportunities 

The NRHA Village in the Central Lobby is the perfect place for independent retailers to mix and mingle and talk business. The Village is home to the NRHA All-Industry Conference, a series of educational seminars and networking opportunities.

Independent retailers are invited to the NRHA Independent Retailer Reception, tomorrow afternoon from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. in the NRHA Village. Also, head outside for Retailer Happy Hour, which will be from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the Tailgate, Backyard & BBQ area. Free drinks will be available for all retailers who attend.


Seminars and Awards Programs

Stop by the NRHA Village to hear from a variety of speakers, including keynotes from the stars of HGTV’s “Good Bones,” the CEO of The Grommet and the co-founder and CEO of TreeHouse. There will be research that explores purchases from Amazon compared to purchases from local home improvement stores, information about competing online and much more. Awards ceremonies include NRHA’s Top Guns Awards, NRHA’s Retailers’ Choice Awards and Reimagine Retail, presented by the National Hardware Show.


Presented by title sponsor Adams Manufacturing, the first-ever Ultimate Backyard at the National Hardware Show® is the perfect place to relax and unwind under the Las Vegas sun while getting an up-close glimpse at the outdoor living products customers crave.

From grills and coolers to outdoor furniture, fireplaces and more, Ultimate Backyard has it all!

Conveniently located outside in the Tailgate, Backyard & BBQ area of the Silver Lot in Booth #Outdoor550, the Ultimate Backyard is a must-visit destination!

Adams Manufacturing, the main sponsor, is North America’s leading supplier of iconic American-made outdoor resin furniture and accessories. See its full line of products and much more in the Ultimate Backyard! 


Don't Miss These Vendors

Enjoy a full array of products and accessories from:
  • Better Life Technology
  • Blue Orange Pottery
  • Bug Elimination & Prevention Co.
  • Classic Accessories
  • Canadian Spa Company
  • Coolbox Cooler
  • Dometic Corp.
  • Fiberbuilt
  • Garden Weasel
  • Global Outdoor Concepts
  • GoSun
  • Great Scrape
  • Husqvarna Professional Products
  • La Crosse Technology
  • Lifetime Products
  • Naturae Decor
  • Pawleys Island Hammocks
  • Portacool
  • Real Flame Fireplaces
  • SnapLock Industries
  • SYNLawn
  • Tarter Farm and Ranch
  • The Boltze Group/Ember Grills
  • Toy State
  • Official Bar Sponsor: Traeger Grills
  • Official Truck Sponsor: Nissan Commercial Vehicles 
Updated list as of 4/27


The National Hardware Show® eagerly brought back the Reimagine Retail program after its successful and invigorating debut at last year’s Show. For the 2018 installment of the program, independent home improvement retailers were asked how they would spend $100,000 to improve or implement technology in their operations.

“Our goal is to empower retailers to decide the best way forward for their business and to support them every step of the way as they make their retail vision a reality,” says National Hardware Show vice president Rich Russo. “This program provides a powerful opportunity to independent retailers.”

Entrants were asked to write a 250-word essay exploring how they would use the grand prize toward technology in their businesses. Projects could relate to any of the following categories:
  • Inventory management systems
  • Checkout process
  • Marketing, advertising and public relations
  • E-commerce platforms
  • Training software
  • In-store experience
  • Customer relationship management systems
  • And more!
From the outstanding pool of entries, a panel of industry professionals, retail veterans and experts chose five finalists to come to the National Hardware Show. The finalists take the stage tomorrow at 1 p.m. in the NRHA Village, located in the Central Lobby. The panelists will talk about the inspirations behind their ideas and how implementing their project would improve their business and their community.

The winner of the $100,000 prize will be announced Wednesday at 2 p.m. on the NRHA Village Stage.

Learn more about each finalist here and plan to attend the panel and the prize presentation to celebrate the ingenuity of independent retailers. 


The 2018 Finalists


The Color House 

Wakefield, Rhode Island 
The Color House plans to use social media to develop a rewards program. In addition to earning rewards for purchases, customers would also earn them for referrals, reviews and social media sharing. They would be able to see how close they are to their next reward, and those who engaged the most would earn exclusive perks. 

Just Grillin Inc. 

Tampa, Florida 
Just Grillin Inc. imagines a connected showroom to allow customers to virtually see their new living space. Through tablets, mounted TVs and voice-activated smart home assistants, customers would be able to tour their proposed outdoor living renovations. Just Grillin also plans to enhance its marketing and website to attract new customers.

La Grange Park Ace Hardware 

La Grange Park, Illinois 
La Grange Park Ace Hardware plans to install parcel lockers to facilitate the increasing number of buy online, pickup in store orders it receives. Customers could use the lockers to retrieve their online orders and even rent tools. The company also plans to install a Perfect Plant kiosk to help manage its live goods inventory.

Weeks Home Hardware 

Waterdown, Ontario 
Using an array of digital tools, Weeks Home Hardware seeks to understand how customers move and interact within the store. The company plans to use kiosks at the entrance of the building to give customers digital access to flyers and coupons. The business wants to integrate e-commerce with its inventory management system to allow customers to purchase items online and pick up in-store.

Woods Hardware

Cincinnati, Ohio 
Woods Hardware has already developed a 3D walkthrough of its downtown store that links to the e-commerce website. The fully realized plan would allow customers to virtually walk through the store, click on an item and have it delivered the same day. To implement the system, Woods Hardware needs to make significant improvements to its POS system so it can send accurate inventory data to the website in real time. 


The North American Retail Hardware Association (NRHA) is the source of education and inspiration at the National Hardware Show®. At this year’s event, NRHA has slated three keynote speakers to share their insights on the home improvement industry.

Tomorrow, head to the NRHA Village at 11:30 a.m. to hear the stars of HGTV’s home renovation show “Good Bones” Karen E Laine and Mina Starsiak Hawk discuss how their family business evolved into a hit TV show. The mother-daughter duo will talk about how renovating started as a hobby but has now become a full-time career for both women. 

Be sure to stay around after their presentation for a meet-and-greet with Karen and Mina from 12:15 to 12:45 p.m.

Come back to the NRHA Village tomorrow afternoon for an inside look into The Grommet, an online product discovery platform launched in 2008.

Co-founder and CEO Jules Pieri will talk about her initial idea for The Grommet and how the idea came to fruition. The company works to identify products that solve everyday problems for consumers and also looks for up-and-coming trends. Learn from Pieri how The Grommet connects with makers in local communities to support small business.

Attend Pieri’s presentation at 3 p.m. tomorrow in the NRHA Village.

“We’re always looking for speakers who will bring new ideas and valuable insights about the home improvement channel,” says Dan Tratensek, publisher and executive vice president for NRHA. “On the first day of the National Hardware Show, we’re thrilled to have two incredible keynote speakers for attendees to be inspired to take what they’ve learned back to their businesses.”

See below for a complete schedule of the expert presentations that will take place this week in the NRHA Village. 


  • 8:45 – 9 a.m.

    NRHA Village Stage Opening
  • 9:30 – 10:15 a.m.

    Rooster Economics—Understanding Your Flock Can Help You Sell Your Business
    Speaker: Andrea Ridout, author and former independent retailer
  • 10:30 – 11:15 a.m.

    NRHA Young Retailer Panel
    Presented By: NRHA and Hardware Retailing
    Moderator: Scott Wright, executive director, NRHA Retail Leadership Institute
  • 11:30 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

    KEYNOTE: Small Business Management: Turning a Hobby Into Something More
    Speakers: Stars of HGTV's "Good Bones," Karen E Laine and Mina Starsiak Hawk
  • 12:15 – 12:45 p.m.

    "Good Bones" Meet and Greet
  • 1 – 1:45 p.m.

    Reimagine Retail Panel
    Speaker: The National Hardware Show®
  • 2 – 2:45 p.m.

    Competing Online: Appealing to Multiple Generations and Pros

    Speaker: Jim Robisch, senior partner, The Farnsworth Group
  • 3 – 3:45 p.m.

    KEYNOTE: How to Discover the Next Big Thing
    Speaker: Jules Pieri, co-founder and CEO, The Grommet
  • 3 – 5 p.m.

    Retailer Happy Hour
    Located in the Tailgate, Backyard & BBQ
  • 4 – 4:45 p.m.

    Collaborating to Win: New Approaches to Retailer-Supplier Engagement
    Speaker: Daniel Duty, Founder and CEO, Conlego
  • 5 – 6:30 p.m.

    NRHA Independent Retailer Reception
    Presented By: NRHA and Hardware Retailing 



Yard Force, the outdoor power equipment brand by SUMEC, features a full line of tools, including pressure washers, leaf blowers, lawn mowers, line trimmers and more. The company recently launched 120-volt lithium ion battery-powered tools, as well. See the options in Booth #12629 in the North Hall, or visit

K-CO Products

Glü™ is the ultimate glue for plastics and nearly everything else, including leather, metals, stone, glass, fiberglass, rubber, paper, porcelain, wood and acrylic. The formula was designed for difficult plastic-to-plastic applications. It bonds in 30 seconds, has no solvents and is environmentally friendly. To learn more, visit Booth #8762 or go to


The Easy Haul Flat Bed Cart is design to haul almost anything. It has an easy-to-maneuver 33-inch handle, heavy-duty 13-inch plastic wheels and easy-tilt design to provide motion balance over variable terrain. The cart can haul more than 200 pounds, and it has a removable handle for storage or transport. Visit Simplay3 in Booth #10064 located in the Made in USA featured area to learn more, or visit


Retailers who are strong in outdoor categories understand that one of the best ways to make a sale is by creating hands-on experiences for customers, whether it’s with a full campsite display or through cooking demos that fill the store with mouth-watering smells sizzling up from the latest grills. The experts at the National Hardware Show® understand the importance of a great hands-on experience, too, which is why at the 2018 Show, you can experience many of the products in the outdoor living, tailgating and pet categories in the new Ultimate Backyard located outside in the Silver Lot. Look for the following outdoor trends as you spend time testing the latest products in the great outdoors.      

BBQs Get Smart

Cooking outdoors is always one of the more popular outdoor activities, and this trend remains strong in 2018. But while the standard grill is still the cornerstone of outdoor entertaining, consumers are branching out to try different techniques or incorporate innovative technologies into their grilling game. Some popular products include Wi-Fi-enabled grills, after-market thermometers that track grill temperatures or cooking rates, and solar cookers, like GoSun ( that can be used even in winter temperatures. These smart devices not only change things up, but they also help reduce carbon footprints through precision-based technology and alternative fuels.

G-Y-O (Grow-Your-Own)​

One of the popular trends in outdoor living is literally growing. An increased interest in urban homesteading and the desire to know where one’s food comes from and how it’s grown are reasons the hardware industry has seen a rise in the number of consumers interested in growing their own produce. Because of this trend, the demand for products such as garden boxes and other containers, certified organic soils, like those by Dr. Earth® (, insect and weed controls and organic fertilizers and soil amendments, has also increased. 

Let the Games Begin

Yard games are maintaining a strong foothold in the trend department as consumers seek group activities for backyard get-togethers. The fun is no longer limited to daylight hours, thanks to custom rope lighting from Brightz ( Brightz can be added to outdoor games like cornhole and basketball for extended play. To keep the good times rolling into the evening hours, insect repellants are also a must, especially those that incorporate all-natural ingredients, a key trend among homeowners with children and pets and those concerned about chemical sensitivity. Several vendors here at the Show are showcasing all-natural repellant products.