HTSA Meeting Kicks Off in Chicago
The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) kicked off its fall meeting in Chicago Tuesday night with opening remarks from managing director Bob Hana, some business talk from Chuck Zimmerman of Sandler Training, and a cocktail party and dinner down the street at local sports legend Mike Ditka's restaurant.
"We are gathered here because we want you to kick ass in the fourth quarter," Hana said in his typically colorful opening remarks. Hana shared the news of three new HTSA members- Electronic Integrators/Lelch AV, Sound Xperience and ACT Technologies, as well as four new vendors- Kaleidescape, Screen Innovations, TiVo and Wi3- all of whom had joined since HTSA last gathered.
Hana had positive business news as well. The industry remains, he said, in recovery. This year, over 85 percent of HTSA members business is stronger than a year ago, he said. In addition, 28 percent have already expanded operations, with 45 percent in a "hiring" mood. And over 70 percent of members say their business with HTSA is up over last year, with four vendors even doubling their business with the group.
The managing director also went into services offered by HTSA, following up last year's introduction of new web services, LeadMe, financial analysis, trade-to-trade marketing resouces and more. HTSA is now offering three new services: Financial consultation services from Porte Brown, sales and corporate strategy from Sandler Training and web development help from Tribune Company subsidiary 435 Digital.
Chuck Zimmerman of Sandler delivered a presentation about Sandler's sales philosophy, asking the question "do you sell to live or live to sell?"
Following the opening, the group gathered at Ditka's restaurant for dinner and drinks.
Much is scheduled for Wednesday, including group meetings, panels and an awards ceremony.
Related story: HTSA Reveals New Member Benefits