For all the literary buffs out there, Sonos' story is inching closer to a final resolution for the CI community.
About a year ago, the message was simple; it stated: "Grow with us." It wasn't a complete about-face from the direct to consumer model, but it was a pivotal step in courting the modern day A/V dealer. Their mission was simple, drop their existing independent rep program, move to a direct service model, and compliment the turnover with a dedicated Custom Integrator channel management team.
Building on that, Sonos then released the Sonos One which featured a full-blown agnosticism to digital assistants by rolling out with Alexa, offering support for Siri and Google shortly after. It was also competitively priced to undercut Google and Apple flagship smart speakers and added a cheeky two-for-one deal when Apple launched their HomePod.
The cherry on top was Sonos executing on a plan to work with a wide range of control companies including the likes of Wink, Lutron, Crestron, TuneMap, iPort, Alarm.com, and Yonomi as well as API support for URC, Control4, Somfy, and Samsung SmartThings.
And as a final act of good faith, Sonos has formally decided to join Azione as a vendor for their buying group. And Azione may be one of the best suited for the job, offering a competitive foundation of tight-knit integrators who are chomping at the bit to begin selling a product with so much brand recognition.
"Joining Azione Unlimited is our first official association with a buying group within the CEDIA space – it’s an important step for us," said Andrew Vloyanetes, Head of Sales at Sonos. "We are committed to building stronger relationships with the channel, and this is one more step in our commitment to the professional residential installer. Sonos will be actively attending and participate in the Azione events, engaging with Azione dealers in new ways, and soliciting feedback from Azione partners throughout the year."
Sonos will join Azione as part of the new 'Perfect Partner' initiative, described as "being a dynamic organization where dealers support vendors and likewise, vendors support dealers," by the buying group. Atlona and Lyngdorf currently fill out the roster alongside the new Sonos addition.
“We are thrilled to welcome Sonos as our newest ‘Perfect Partner.’ Not only are they one of the most sought-after brands, but they also have the vision and resources the industry needs to support the ever-evolving audio category,” says Richard Glikes, President of Azione Unlimited.
Sonos’ whole home sound system will be available to Azione dealers and their customers starting this Spring. Sonos and Azione members will have the opportunity to learn more about their respective businesses while getting to know each other during the Azione 2018 Spring Conference, Philosophically Phocused in Philadelphia, taking place April 23 – 25, 2018.