Looking toward the future, Andy mentioned how he would like to grow the business and one day have somebody continue it on. Thompson Goddard Photo

Making a difference in people’s lives

CHESTERVILLE – Cotnam Ace Hardware and Curran Flooring are two Chesterville businesses that strive to ensure that customer service and staff appreciation are hallmarks of the companies. Both businesses are owned and operated by Andy Cotnam, a long-time resident of Chesterville and son of Kaireen and Andy Cotnam.

Cotnam Ace Hardware was established in 1996. The business fulfilled a dream of Andy Sr. to run a hardware store. He and wife Kaireen purchased Curran Flooring in 1985 from Bernie and Madelaine Curran.

Andy Jr. took over the running of Curran Flooring in January 2019 when his mother retired. He further mentioned that his wife Leslie and their three children, Gabrielle, Drew and Cameron, have all worked in the family businesses over the years. Leslie became full-time at both stores in October 2021.

The former CO-OP building on King Street has been the home of Cotnam Ace Hardware since 2005, with the business located at 19 Industrial Drive between 1996 and 2005. Andy explained the store carries a wide selection of hardware items, pest control products, gardening and lawn supplies as well as seasonal items including baby chickens in the spring through to the fall months. Curran Flooring located at 18 Industrial Drive in Chesterville brings to its clients over thirty years experience in the field, with the opportunity to purchase and have several types of flooring including LVP, ceramic tile, laminate, hardwood and sheet vinyl, custom blinds, area rugs and runners.

Finding staff, price increases, and supply back-orders are just some of the challenges facing both businesses because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but Andy feels confident these hurdles will be overcome. He mentioned while there are always challenges facing small businesses, the opportunity to meet new customers and having repeat customers returning “because of the great service they received” are all positive parts of the business.

For those starting out in a small business, Leslie mentioned the importance of making “sure you love what you do.” Andy noted how small business requires long work hours, the importance of staff and providing good customer service. He continued how a card or phone call from a client “saying how much they appreciated the service you provided” can dispel any feelings of discouragement. “Words can’t even describe how seeing families 10-15-20-30 years later and catching up” feels.

Leslie and Andy both expressed their sincere thanks to staff for their hard work and dedication to ensuring customers have a great experience at both companies. Zane Mark, Jo-Ann Leeman, Cathy Cross-MacMillan, Tanya Mark and Gabrielle Cotnam are important members of the Cotnam Ace Hardware team, with sales associate Marlene Harper a valued employee at Curran Flooring.

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