After years of operation at Weber Street North and Benjamin Road in Waterloo, Kuntz Landscape Depot will have new ownership and a new name this spring.
The longtime landscape supply business on the Woolwich-Waterloo border was recently sold to the former owners of Basics office products, Jim Dillon and his son Jeff Dillon. The deal closes Dec. 31.
The change comes as Ray Kuntz moves to concentrate his area of focus on his other project, Kuntz Gravel Ltd., located on Bridge Street, on the Woolwich side of the road. The venture also operates a small gravel pit at 889 Bridge St. W. Last month, Woolwich council approved an increase of the annual tonnage extracted from the site, to 80,000 tonnes from 50,000.
The shift in focus prompted Kuntz to sell the landscape businesses, property and buildings at 650 Weber St. N. to the Dillons.
“I’m quite excited about it; there’s lots of opportunity in improvements that we’re going to be working on in the next 12 months, initially, that will take this business to the next level,” said Jeff Dillon, noting that under its new structure, the business, now called Stone Landscapes, will see an expanded product line and some staff additions.
“We will have a new fresh look; there’s going to be a broader selection of product, we’re going to expand the retail component of it and we’re going to make the outside area, generally the whole yard and the feel for the business more user-friendly, easier to shop,” he said.
The landscape supply business already offers all types of hardscape supplies, from stones and paving to retaining walls, both natural and concrete, as well as driveways.
The business will continue to focus on supplying a varied mix of clients, including commercial businesses, homeowners, the school boards, private businesses and municipalities.
“Anybody that really wants landscaping, hardscapes,” said Dillon.
On tap for the near future is the creation of a website that will be “intuitive” and help customers with their choices, said Dillon.
Though landscape and office supplies have very little in common, Dillon noted that the change from his family business of many years came in part as a result of his personal interest in landscaping. The fact that he also studied horticulture should also help him along the way.
“I decided to look at landscaping due to the interest I’ve always [had] in landscaping. I’ve taken horticulture through school, and this was an opportunity to go into something that was in landscaping and that, coupled with the fact that I spent the last 15 years in a family-run business made this a very appealing choice,” he said, noting that the venture will continue to be family operated as he runs it with his father.
“Generally, I just like the industry. I like that it’s an outdoor business; I like the people that are in it: they generally have the same interests.”
Although the deal officially goes through next week, Dillon is already operating Stone Landscape. An open house marking the change will be held in the spring.