Our Global Reach

Stanley’s factory in Sheffield, England, c. 1939.

FOR THOSE WHO MAKE THE WORLD™

When The Stanley Works completed its merger with Black & Decker in 2010, it was yet another step toward creating a global company.

The Stanley Works already had a global presence, with nearly half of its sales coming from outside the United States, but the combination with Black & Decker added a powerful array of international brands and distribution channels that would increase the combined company’s global market share.1

How did The Stanley Works and Black & Decker, whose predecessors date back to 1843, transform themselves from a small bolt manufactory and design engineering shop into a global company with nearly $13 billion in revenue in 2017?2

In the 1890s, after 50 years in the business, The Stanley Works had a lone export agency in Canada.3 The company longed to reach farther afield, and finally a dedicated sales department. Then-CEO George Hart set up an export office in New York in 1902, and through these efforts the company built considerable trade in Latin America, Europe and Australia.4

In 1914, Stanley truly became a multinational corporation with the purchase of a manufacturing plant in Hamilton, Ontario.5 That plant became so successful that a cold-rolling factory was added next to it, leading to the incorporation of The Stanley Steel Co. Ltd.6


Left: Black & Decker trade booth in Brussels, Belgium, 1930.
Right: A Black & Decker booth displaying products in Japan, 1929.

Stanley also purchased a controlling stake in a factory in Sheffield, England, in 1937. While expansion of that facility was put on hold during the war years, the company bought out the remaining one-third of the center in 1946.7 This, along with subsequent manufacturing facilities in Ecclesfield and Cardiff, Wales, allowed the company to expand further in other world markets.8 More than 100 years after its founding, Stanley had facilities in Germany, Italy, Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, Guatemala and Australia.9

Following the fall of the Soviet Union Stanley formed a joint venture with two other Polish manufacturing companies in 1991 to create Stanley Tools Poland.10 The company was the first of the Connecticut multinational corporations to open a facility in the Eastern Bloc.11


The Stanley Works in Germany, 1951.

In 2005, Stanley acquired Facom, the French hand tools company founded in 1918, giving it greater access to European markets and superior brand strength. Stanley already generated 30 percent of its sales from outside North America. By the time of the merger with Black & Decker five years later, that number had grown to 44 percent.12

The history of Black & Decker also shows a strong proclivity toward international expansion. Founded in 1910, the company opened an export department in 1925 and hired its first international sales representative in 1927.13 Over the next half century, Black & Decker continued its international expansion and distribution, either manufacturing in or exporting to more than 40 countries in Europe, South America, Africa and the Far East.14

The Stanley Black & Decker family of companies separately brought strengths in different geographies. As a result, when they came together, they represented a true global powerhouse with sales and operations in key areas around the globe. At the same time, the company continues to nurture and grow its local brands to ensure they remain strong components of its global strategy.

 


 

[1] "The Stanley Works Investor Overview." The Stanley Works. February 17, 2010. Accessed February 26, 2018. http://phx.corporate-ir.net/External.File?item=UGFyZW50SUQ9MjkxMTV8Q2hpbGRJRD0tMXxUeXBlPTM=&t=1. 48
[2] Stanley Black & Decker. Fourth Quarter 2017 Overview. January 24, 2018. New Britain, CT.; Rodengen, Jeffrey L. The Legend of Stanley: 150 years of The Stanley Works. Fort Lauderdale,
FL: Write Stuff Syndicate, 1996. vi.; Stanley Black & Decker. Investor Relations. "Stanley and Black & Decker Complete Merger." News release, March 12, 2010. Accessed February 23, 2018. http://ir.stanleyblackanddecker.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=114416&p=irol-sec&seccat01enhanced.2_rs=1&seccat01enhanced.2_rc=10&control_symbol=.; Scott, Otto J. The powered hand: the story of Black &; Decker. Washington: Uncommon Books, 1994. 7.
[3] Levitt, Robert K. Foundations for the Future. The History of Stanley Works. New Britain, CT: Privately Published, 1951. 67.
[4] Rodengen, Jeffrey L. The Legend of Stanley: 150 years of The Stanley Works. Fort Lauderdale,
FL: Write Stuff Syndicate, 1996. 49-50.
[5] Levitt, Robert K. Foundations for the Future. The History of Stanley Works. New Britain, CT: Privately Published, 1951.  94.
[6] Levitt, Robert K. Foundations for the Future. The History of Stanley Works. New Britain, CT: Privately Published, 1951. 95.
[7] Rodengen, Jeffrey L. The Legend of Stanley: 150 years of The Stanley Works. Fort Lauderdale,
FL: Write Stuff Syndicate, 1996. 86, 92.
[8] Rodengen, Jeffrey L. The Legend of Stanley: 150 years of The Stanley Works. Fort Lauderdale,
FL: Write Stuff Syndicate, 1996. 97.
[9] Rodengen, Jeffrey L. The Legend of Stanley: 150 years of The Stanley Works. Fort Lauderdale,
FL: Write Stuff Syndicate, 1996. 107.
[10] "Stanley Works' Polish Venture." The Wall Street Journal (New York), February 19, 1991.
[11] Campbell, W. Joseph. "Patience Expected to Pay off in Eastern EUrope." Hartford Courant, December 9, 1991.
[12] Politi, James. “Stanley acquires Facom of France for $500m.”; Financial Times. July 18, 2005. Accessed February 23,2018. https://www.ft.com/content/54e94e1a-f7ae-11d9-9f64-00000e2511c8.; "The Stanley Works Investor Overview." The Stanley Works. February 17, 2010. Accessed February 26, 2018. http://phx.corporate-ir.net/External.File?item=UGFyZW50SUQ9MjkxMTV8Q2hpbGRJRD0tMXxUeXBlPTM=&t=1. 48.
[13] Scott, Otto J. The powered hand: the story of Black &; Decker. Washington: Uncommon Books, 1994. 6, 41, 45.
[14] Scott, Otto J. The powered hand: the story of Black &; Decker. Washington: Uncommon Books, 1994. 227,231.