Canadian Manufacturing

Teamsters voice opposition to Lowe’s Rona takeover bid

Union calling Rona "Quebec jewel" of hardware and reno industry



Laval, Que.—U.S. hardware giant Lowe’s is facing more opposition to its very public takeover bid of Quebec-based Rona.

The Teamsters Union has joined the Quebec government in voicing opposition to the takeover attempt after North Carolina-based Lowe’s went public with its bid to buy the Canadian home reno firm at $14.50 a share.

Many estimates put the bid at a total of $1.8-billion.

Calling Rona a “Quebec jewel” in the hardware and home reno industry, Teamsters brass are taking a firm stance in the matter.

“We’re against this potential sale because there are too many unknowns for the members we represent at Rona,” Teamsters Local Union 1999 president Serge Berube said in a statement. “We don’t want them to end up like the workers at Zellers.”

The union lauded the provincial government and Quebec Finance Minister Raymond Bachand as they take up arms together in a bid to protect the Boucherville-based firm.

“Fundamentally, in the long term, selling to Lowe’s could mean economic dismantling,” Bachand said. “Lowe’s has made many promises in its offer, but in the short-term, it only has one obligation and that’s to maximize profits.”

Bachand is also worried about where Lowe’s stands on the issue of buying Quebec-made products, according to the union, while Teamsters Canada is worried about the survival of jobs if Lowe’s bid is successful.

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