Updated: 3 days ago
Overwhelmingly, I prefer the term dealer to retailer, using “retailer” only when the grammar requires it.
That bucks a recent trend from many in the industry to reclassify independent “paintsellers” from dealers to the more modern term, retailers.
Which I admit, encapsulates the role more fully.
But to me, we are still dealers and I can explain my strange love for the word.
When my great-grandparents Isaac and Esther Lipton started Tremont Paint in the Bronx, in 1907 they were dealers. Part of a collection of people selected by the paint companies to represent their brands, to “deal” in those products. Benjamin Moore, Dutch Boy (made by a company called National Lead, before lead became a four-letter word) and countless local grinders all called their authorized locations: dealers.
After my great-grandparents, my grandfather Jack was a paint dealer and so was my father Billy, who retired before the term retailer would begin to push its way into the lexicon. The Lipton men who came before me were all paint dealers!
Who am I to change that?
If you've been following these screeds long enough, you're aware of my efforts to bring e-commerce to paint dealers.
My own war for Independents.
First to join the fight was BJ Andriot of Andriot’s Paint and flooring in Shelbyville, Kentucky.
Andriot’s Paint and Flooring is a single-store paint, flooring and window treatments dealer who also sells THE Big Green Egg, just for fun. For paint, Andriot’s stocks Benjamin Moore, California, Insl-X and Richard’s. Founded in 1946 by BJ’s grandfather, BJ took over the helm of Andriot’s from his father Bob in 2005. BJ is a member of the AllPro buying group; The member-owned cooperative of paint dealers which played a crucial role in my success as a dealer.
Minuteman number two is Zach Maddux.
Zach and his father Zeke own Columbia Paint & Wallcovering in Columbia, Tennessee. A single-store paint, wallcoverings and window treatments dealer selling Benjamin Moore, Richard’s and their own private label paints, while also dealing with Graber, Dash & Alpert and the major wallpaper manufacturers.
Like BJ, Zach and his father are members of AllPro.
As always, I appreciate the support AllPro members have always given me.
Three of a Kind
On May 27, 1776 at a meeting of the “legal inhabitants” of Malden, Massachusetts it was decided, unanimously to flip King George III THE bird!
Through their chosen representative, word was sent to the Continental Congress in Philadelphia: “….we bid a final adieu to Britain!”
Many historians believe Malden to be the birthplace of American independence!
And so it's fitting the first group of dealers to sign on to my e-commerce revolution includes a dealer from Malden, Massachusetts!
Like Andriot's and Columbia, Todd Zigelbaum’s Town Line Paint is multi-generational; the business started by Todd’s grandmother Esther as a wallpaper boutique in 1965! Todd and his brother Gary added paint in 1983 and now Town Line stocks them all: Benjamin Moore, PPG, C2, Cabot’s, Fine Paints of Europe, ReColor for recycled paints plus wallpaper and window treatments.
THE trio, the first to sign on to my Revolution web site and e-commerce platform for paint dealers.
I am grateful to Zach, BJ and Todd for joining the fight!