July 11, 2007 10:00 ET

RONA Continues Expansion in Atlantic Canada

Close to $10 million invested and 50 jobs created in Edmundston, New Brunswick

EDMUNDSTON, NEW BRUNSWICK--(Marketwire - July 11, 2007) - RONA Inc. (TSX:RON), the largest Canadian distributor and retailer of hardware, renovation and gardening supplies, officially unveiled its new RONA Edmundston store today. The opening of the proximity store at 595 Carrier Street represents an investment of close to $10 million and creates 50 new jobs. The 21st RONA point of sale in Atlantic Canada, this store is owned by RONA and by brothers Paul and Ron Cormier, two local Edmundston businessmen with a long family history in the hardware-renovation business.

"RONA is extremely proud to continue its expansion in the Atlantic Provinces and to have a presence in the Edmundston community. RONA Edmundston is the first 35,000-square foot store we have built in Canada with a completely new concept. This store fits perfectly with our unique business model and allows us to meet the different needs of the communities we serve, regardless of size or location, with stores of various formats. We are confident that both customers and contractors in Edmundston and surrounding area will be well served by this all-new made-to-measure store," RONA president and CEO Robert Dutton said.

Joining the Cormiers and Dutton for the inauguration of the new store were Edmundston-Saint Basile MLA Madeleine Dube, Edmundston Mayor Gerald Allain and Federal MP for Madawaska-Restigouche Jean-Claude Amours, as well as members of the RONA management team, employees of the new store and, of course, many customers.

Everything under one roof

Offering some 20,000 products, 90% from Canadian suppliers, RONA Edmundston will provide customers and builders with everything they need, all conveniently available under one roof. In addition to a nearly 35,000 square-foot retail sales area and building-materials warehouse, the store also features a 50,000-square-foot outdoor lumberyard, a 12,000-square foot outdoor garden centre and a 160-vehicle parking lot.

"While continuing the RONA tradition of offering exceptional service and an in-depth knowledge of our products, we will provide our customers with an innovative store design that expands and improves on the traditional hardware store. There are hardware, floor covering, wood and building materials departments, as well as specialty boutiques for paint, lighting, and doors and windows. These "stores within stores" make the whole shopping experience easier and more convenient for the customer," said store manager Paul Cormier.

"We've spent months preparing for this grand opening. The whole team is ready to welcome our customers from Edmundston and surrounding area and to offer them the largest selection of construction and renovation products available in the region - and we guarantee the lowest prices in town," said Cormier.

RONA, supporting local youth

During the opening ceremony, the RONA Foundation presented a cheque for $2,500 to Jeunes Entreprises Nouveau-Brunswick, an organization that has devoted the past 17 years to helping young people in the area develop their working skills and self-esteem. This donation demonstrates the RONA Foundation's commitment to helping build better communities and celebrates the arrival the RONA Edmundston, New Brunswick store.

Sometimes young people need a helping hand - a bit of motivation and encouragement to fulfil their potential. The RONA Foundation is dedicated to helping young people believe in themselves and in their future, as much for their own good as for that of their community.

The RONA Foundation's mission is to give assistance to young people 12 to 30 years of age by working to reduce school dropout and illiteracy rates, and by helping to provide them with the training they need to take up a trade or other occupation.

About RONA

RONA Inc. is the largest Canadian distributor and retailer of hardware, home renovation and gardening products. RONA operates a network of 670 corporate, franchise and affiliate stores of various sizes and formats. With over 26,000 employees working under its family of banners in every region of Canada and more than 14 million square feet of retail space, the RONA store network generates close to $6 billion in annual retail sales.

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