Talon News - Good Local News

By Staff



October 19, 2018

Ahsley and Trevor Lindsay with new inventory and brand displays such as Kwikset.

Aztec Hardware Relocates

By TALON Staff

Aztec Hardware is alive and well, settling into its new digs at 636 Northeast Aztec Boulevard. Although you will see the familiar faces of Ashley and Trevor Lindsay, new owner Rocky Dumas is now at the helm of the business. Dumas brings tried and true experience and a diverse business background, he is optimistic about the collaboration. Aztec residents will be happy to know he is also bringing in a lot of inventory! Over $40,000, just for starters. Trucks are arriving daily with deliveries as the Lindsays busily stock the shelves and work on displays.

The location houses two additional businesses, Essco Pipe & Supply, and a currently unnamed section offering an eclectic collection of yard art. Many will recognize the Essco name, with a Farmington location at 2600 W. Main. This second location in Aztec is intended to better serve that portion of their client base in Aztec and its surrounding area. The three businesses being at one location is not by chance, their products and services intertwine to offer a unique opportunity for one stop shopping for many purposes. "It all has to do with water", Dumas explains, and, "Hardware is part of it". In addition to pipe, Essco sells cisterns for catching rain water, fire hydrants, septic tank systems, water meters, pumps and more. These items are used by rural water users and associations, contractors, farmers, landscapers and homeowners, etc. Regardless of who the customer is, there is typically a need for tools and/or hardware.

The yard art portion is like the cherry on top! It features wonderfully colorful and unique pieces from around the world. Homeowners and landscapers can use the combined services of the three businesses to create water features and decorate their outdoor space. Apparently, it is catching on because even with no name or sign the location sold approximately $30,000 in inventory based solely on an open house and word of mouth. Dumas notes that he often recognized Colorado residents frequenting the business in addition to locals. The lack of signage is not intentional, it has just been delayed while working out details regarding local ordinances. Some of the eye-catching ideas for the future of the business could include a mural and/or displaying items outdoors.

The evolution of this trilogy began quite simply. Dumas wanted to add another Essco location more convenient for his Aztec area customers. He liked the Northeast Aztec Boulevard property. It is nearly two acres, has buildings that offer space for multiple businesses, storage, parking, and is situated in such a way that customers purchasing pipe or other large items can drive through the yard to pick up materials or be loaded. It was a lengthy process, but when he finally acquired the property he began cleaning it up and renovating, which required tools and supplies. In an effort to shop local he frequented Aztec Hardware and recognized that the business was struggling. That sparked the conversations with the Lindsays that led to Dumas purchasing the business. Dumas confided, "I'm trying to save it".

First thing he did was arrange for the Lindsay's, himself and his bookkeeper to go to a large hardware expo in Kansas where they perused vendor exhibits and gleaned advice regarding inventory recommendations. Dumas believes that the Lindsay's experience and the voluminous business records offer valuable information about what the store needs to stock to remain a viable piece of Aztec's economy. However, Dumas did not stop at consulting the experts, including the Lindsays and poring over financial records. He took a pro-active approach by contacting local municipalities asking what items they purchased on a regular basis and communicated the hardware store's commitment to keep those items on hand. In the meantime, he was also learning that his pipe supply customers would appreciate there being hardware available at the same location. His goal is to have better than expected service. Dumas summarizes, "All we need is a chance to earn your business".

A Farmington graduate, Dumas is a self-taught businessman who has been successful in a variety of entrepreneurial endeavors. He is also the owner of Sims Marina. He purchased Essco Pipe & Supply in 2015. Essco was a well-established business formed in 1985. Yet, the first thing he addressed was appearance of the Essco location. He believes, "If we look good, people want to do business with you", adding, "Nobody wants to business with a sinking ship". Similarly, his plans for the new Aztec Hardware location will be visually appealing. Dumas recognizes Aztec Hardware is an Aztec icon, through research he learned it has been serving citizens and visitors since 1907. Therefore, when making improvements he wants to incorporate vintage touches that are reminiscent of the historical roots of the store. The vintage Aztec Hardware signs have been preserved and Dumas has purchased a 1951 flatbed truck, also with a local history, that will boast a historic Aztec Hardware sign.

While it may take some getting to, the new location lends itself to expansion and unique opportunities that would not have been possible at the former Main St. location. The Lindsays have wanted to add lumber to the inventory and the new space could allow for that. Dumas wants to maximize the potential of the location and envisions possible collaboration with additional businesses. There is definitely room for growth! He is planning on another Open House this spring when he intends to boost yard art inventory and include live music. Dumas explains, "The goal is to make people hit the brakes, turn around and say I've gotta see what's in that store!"

In conclusion, Dumas shares, "I've invested in the inventory, and I've invested in Aztec". He says he welcomes any feedback, good or bad. And, reminds San Juan County residents that money spent at these businesses stays in San Juan County.


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