Home Depot, the massive home improvement retailer with annual revenues just north of $65 million dollars, is throwing its weight around the Windy City. Just recently, the company hoisted a twenty-foot plastic sign in their parking lot declaring that “Home Depot will beat any Chicago Kitchen Center quote by 10 percent.”
Chicago Kitchen Center is a family-owned and operated kitchen and bathroom cabinet design center located directly across the street from Home Depot’s West Side neighborhood location. Owner Jack Emery opened his doors for business back in 2002, a year before Home Depot would begin construction right across the street. Up until now, the two businesses have played nice.
“We’re really not competing with Home Depot, as we carry completely different brands and offer a much more personalized customer experience,” said Emery. “I suppose I’m a bit flattered that a Fortune 500 company eyes me as its competition. And competition is what makes this country great.”
Chicago Kitchen Center has long been a staple of the Lincoln Park small business community. They carry high-end brands such as Bertch, UltraCraft, Medallion, Holiday Kitchen, Wellborn Forest and Armstrong. CKC sets itself apart from behemoths like Lowe’s and Home Depot by spending significant time helping each customer design his or her dream kitchen or bath.
“You never like to see the big guy pick on the little guy, especially in the home improvement sector during such a poor economy,” said Nicholas Apostal, principal realtor of The Apostal Group at Coldwell Banker. “Whenever my clients are looking to add new cabinets, countertops and the like, I send them to Jack because I know they will get a great product and have a fantastic experience.”
Chicago Kitchen Center has two Chicago locations: 4740 W. Armitage Ave. and 2358 N Clybourn. They can be reached at 773-935-6272 or online at http://www.chicagokitchencenter.com.