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Nationwide Dealers Beat Industry Averages

Appliance and consumer electronic shipments up in first half of year

August 16, 2010 By Jeff O’Heir
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Nationwide Marketing Group appliance and consumer electronics dealers beat the industry averages in units shipped in the first half of the year, the buying group executives said.

Major appliances shipped through Nationwide’s roughly 3,000 members grew about 16 percent for the first half of the year, compared with the previous six months. The industry average was about 9 percent. On the CE side, units shipped increased about 12.5 percent for the same period, compared with the industry average of 3 percent.

Ed Kelly, the group president, attributed the increases, especially on the appliance side, to the aggressive marketing campaigns and strategies dealers launched over the last six months, especially in their efforts to beat the big-box chains.

The “Cash for Appliances” federal stimulus program this spring also helped to boost sales, Kelly and dealers said from Nationwide’s PrimeTime conference this week at the Gaylord National Resort and Conference Center in National Harbor, Md.

“The dealers pushed their marketing hard,” Kelly said, adding that dealers also showed remarkable flexibility in their ability to launch new products and promotions faster and more strategically than the big boxes. “The fact that independent retailers can act so fast means we can win.”
In the four presentations he has given since the conference kicked off, Mike Decker, Nationwide's executive vice president of electronics marketing, said he was surprised how upbeat the dealers were about the sales in the second half of the year.

“Spirits are very high going into the second half,” he said, adding that most of the dealers he spoke with were hungry to launch new products, showcase the latest technologies and learn anything they can to help them compete more effectively and operate their business more efficiently.
Decker attributed the increase in CE shipments partly to special product pricing that is unique to Nationwide members. “We’re getting deals that no one else is getting,” he said.

Maria Repole, Toshiba’s vice president of communications, said the Nationwide retailers are integral in expanding the manufacturer’s reach into underserved markets. That penetration will prove especially important when the manufacturer launches its 3DTVs sometime in the fourth quarter.

“They have great, educated sales floors that will help explain the products to consumers and clear up any misconceptions (consumers) might have about the technology,” she said.


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