Farm and ranch retailer plans Grand Valley store

One of the largest farm and ranch supply retailers in the United States has announced plans to soon open an outlet in Grand Junction.

Tractor Supply Company expects to open the store the first week in November and employ 12 to 17 people in full- and part-time positions.

The Mesa County Workforce Center in Grand Junction has scheduled a hiring event for job applicants for Tractor Supply from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 13 and 14. The center is located at 2897 North Ave.

Renovations are under way at a nearly 33,000 square foot building at 2449 U.S. Highway 6 & 50 to accommodate the new store. The building previously housed an Office Depot outlet, but had been vacant since late in 2010. That’s when Office Depot relocated to a nearby building that had housed a Circuit City.

Headquartered in Tennessee, Tractor Supply operates a total of more than 1,130 stores in 45 states. The Grand Junction store will be the third Colorado location for the chain.

Tractor Supply operates stores in rural communities and in the outlying areas of large cities where agriculture is a significant component of the local economy. The company sells clothing, feed, fencing, equipment and other products in serving a niche market of farmers, ranchers, suburban and rural homeowners, contractors and tradesmen.

“Grand Junction is a great fit due to the part-time and hobby farmers,” said Corey Hollis, a district manager for Tractor Supply.

Rob Hoskins, a spokesman for Tractor Supply, reiterated the point in an e-mail. “As a growth-minded company, Tractor Supply Company is always looking for potential new store locations that are good fit as far as the target market is concerned. Concerning the location in Grand Junction, this is especially true in that the area was attractive due to the part-time and hobby farmers and horse owners in the area.”

The inside of the Grand Junction store will include a sales floor and support services area. A fenced area outside will be used to display and store additional products. A Kentucky-based contractor began work on the renovations in August and expects to complete the work in early November.

Founded in 1938 as a mail order tractor parts business that soon developed into a retail store in Minot, N.D., Tractor Supply has grown substantially in terms of its operations and product offerings.

The company, which is traded publicly on the NASDAQ exchange, reported a record $4.23 billion in revenue in 2011.

Tractor Supply sells a wide range of merchandise, including clothing and footwear, fencing materials and gates, hardware and tools, lawn and garden supplies, livestock and pet supplies and tractor and truck parts. Ironically, Tractor Supply does not sell tractors.