Thursday, August 12, 2004

Scotts and Smith & Hawken

Could Smith & Hawken have found themselves a better buyer than The Scotts Company?

I don't think so. Scotts is the world's largest lawn/garden care company, controlling a strong portfolio of brands including Scotts, MiracleGro, Roundup and Ortho. Smith & Hawken adds an upscale lifestyle brand to the mix, and the result may well be greater than the sum of their parts.

Smith & Hawken had become a bit too upscale for its own good - and will be well served by turning a bit more mainstream in their pricing and positioning. The powerful machine behind the Scotts brands can fuel distribution, product extension and volume for S&H.

For Scotts, the acquisition elevates their offerings beyond products and into lifestyle. Its not the teak benches and the gardening clogs themselves that make this an interesting deal. Scotts will have a newfound ability to position brands like Scotts and MiracleGro as essential components of a rich and beautiful life.

Of course, this all has to come together. On paper this seems like a great match - and it will be interesting to watch it evolve.


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