Rubbermaid gets into IT business

Atlanta-based Newell Rubbermaid Inc., a manufacturer of durable, plastic garbage bins and other house hold containers is getting into the information technology business.

Esselte Group Holdings, which has its Canadian office in Mississuaga,

Ont., has agreed to sell its Dymo division, which makes on-demand computer labeling systems, to Newell Rubbermaid for approximately US$730 million in cash.

Newell Rubbermaid, which has more than 31,000 employees and reported more than US$6.6 billion in sales last year, intends to place Dymo in its stable of consumer and commercial brands such as Sharpie, Paper Mate, Parker, Little Tykes, Vise-Grip and Irwin.

Joe Galli, CEO of Newell Rubbermaid said the DYMO acquisition will bring innovative new products to the category. He added that DYMO compliments the company’s other writing instruments and office products and represents a significant opportunity give the complementary nature of the product lines, distribution networks and geographies.

Greg Gray, national IT channel manager for Dymo in Canada, said Newell Rubbermaid wanted to add an IT presence to their brand offering.

Dymo recently released three new printer products under its 400 series.

The new label printers are Windows and Mac ready out of the box, Gray said.

The company also has a software development kit (SDK), which is downloadable off, which enables users to mix and match software or integrate a custom software application for labels.

For example, a paint manufacturer used the SDK to provide Home Depot and other retail outlets a better way of ordering paint. The software can now print off of Dymo label printers Pantone colour labels to be placed outside the paint can. Customer will now know what colour to order next time instead of looking at paint chips, Gray said.

”Dymo printers are ideally suited for people’s desks. In legal, medical and in SMB manufacturing all these people have space concerns,” he said.

Dymo has also revamped its reseller Web site. At, you will find white papers, channel program information, and technical training.

Currently, Dymo has Ingram Micro Canada, Azerty and Synnex Canada as distribution partners. The company has more than 250 registered resellers and Gray plans on increasing that number by the end of this year.

Before developing label printing solutions, Dymo became a household name in the seventies with its Hobbyist Labelmaker, which printed letters onto hard plastic strips.

Dymo generated worldwide sales of about US$225 in 2004. The acquisition is expected to close by year’s end and is subject to regulatory approvals.


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