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Detroit-area retailer Gardner-White acquires larger DC

New facility also will house headquarters, retail outlet

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — Retailer Gardner-White confirmed it has purchased a facility here that will become its new headquarters, distribution center and retail outlet later this year.

The facility, a former home to Ryder Integrated Logistics, will replace the seven-store Detroit-area retailer's current headquarters and distribution center in Warren, Mich. The facility here contains 455,000 square feet, compared with 155,000 square feet the company occupies in Warren.

Company President Steve Tronstein said the company is in expansion mode and that the new facility "has the capacity to handle a lot of business and handle it better and more efficiently than we do now."

In addition to the headquarters and warehouse, Tronstein said the facility will house a 75,000-square-foot retail outlet, similar to but larger than the company's other stores. As a retail location, he said the facility here overlooks Great Lakes Crossing, a major outlet mall, and will be visible from I-75.

A store at the Warren location will remain open, and the warehouse there will be used in some capacity, officials said.

According to a report in Crain's Detroit Business, the retailer paid $6.45 million for the bank-owned property in a deal that closed in December. When used by Ryder, the facility was used for a just-in-time supplier to a General Motors plant about a mile away.

Gardner-White ranks 59th on the Furniture/Today's Top 100 with estimated 2010 furniture, bedding and accessories sales of $89 million.

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