Miscellaneous

Playing the ‘Quality Game’
September 1, 2009

M.D. Manufacturing has been around for almost 50 years now, and we've watched the vicissitudes that have occurred in markets.

Randall Baumberger
March 1, 2006

Ultimate Electronics' president and chief operating officer talks about leading the recently bankrupt specialty chain out of the woods and into the light Ultimate Electronics, the Thornton, Colo.-based specialty retailer that had aggressively expanded throughout the Mountain and Central time zones after going public in the late 1990s, had fallen on hard times by early 2005, as it declared bankruptcy, exited certain markets and closed more than half of its stores. As Ultimate hit bottom, Mark Wattles, the founder and former chairman and CEO of the Hollywood Entertainment video and game rental empire, as well as an Ultimate stockholder and huge fan of

Parity and Profit
March 1, 2006

Even though flat panel TV is going mainstream and its prices are plunging, LG's Bob Perry says 2006 is a great time to be in the custom A/V business. By Janet Pinkerton The downward plunge in flat panel pricing and the spreading splat of flat panel distribution is already sending shockwaves through the custom A/V market—retailers and manufacturers alike. At LG Electronics USA, Vice President of Consumer Electronics, Sales and Channel Marketing Bob Perry seems to be somewhat gleefully looking forward to the wild ride. LG remains committed to the custom channel, says Perry, who pledges that his company's business strategies will allow C-tailers

OCAP Cuts Both Ways
March 1, 2006

An emerging middleware standard promises two-way interactive cable, with or without a set-top box. But does anything ever come easy when it comes to collaboration between the cable and electronics industries? By Cliff Roth Cable TV and consumer electronics are two industries with a long history of mistrust and lack of cooperation, but at January's Consumer Electronics Show, relations appeared decidedly warmer. Samsung and Panasonic announced television sets with integrated OCAP (OpenCable Applications Platform), while several of the biggest cable TV companies, including Comcast, Time Warner and Cox, announced they will begin deploying OCAP in several markets. What's OCAP, you might ask? After all,

Reflections on CES
February 1, 2006

Over 150,000 attendees. Over 2,500 exhibitors. Four days. We'll try to do the math. By Joe Paone This year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES), which ran January 5 to 8 in Las Vegas, was—of no surprise to anyone—the largest CES to date. Projections originally called for about 130,000 attendees, but the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) reported after the show that more than 150,000 people attended this year. CES truly has become one of those rare events that provides so many options and opportunities for learning and relationship-building that attendees owe it to themselves to carefully plot their show strategies and schedules, lest they become overwhelmed

I Bet You'll Find This Amusing?
December 1, 2005

By Ira Friedman Several weeks ago, the good guys! stores in my neighborhood closed their doors for good. Oh, I'm sorry…I'm mistaken. They didn't close for good—they're reopening as "boutiques" inside those fabulous CompUSA stores. So I walked into my local CompUSA to see the new "good guys! inside" section. It's a few aisles of plasmas and assorted A/V gear, merchandised with the same spectacular attention to detail for which CompUSA is known the world over. After years of the good guys! dominating the A/V market in California, it's come to this: A few shelves of product in the back of a

Media Center Doesn't Meet Our Standards
December 1, 2005

By Joe Calise To Media Center, or not to Media Center? That's this year's big question. Do we jump on the bandwagon or not? I personally have mixed feelings about it. We wonder, like many C-tailers do, if Windows Media Center is something that our customers will be looking to us to deliver or carry. When I was offered the opportunity to become a dealer for one of the manufacturers that is making its own hardware for the Media Center platform, I took advantage of the opportunity to explore my options and see what Media Center was all about. Let's face it: If

Changes ahead for the home entertainment and control market
December 1, 2005

From 1991 to 2001, I covered enterprise IT, which is a fancy name for corporate computer networks. Over the course of that decade, I saw a sea change in how businesses handled voice, video and data. Today, I see similar changes heading for the home entertainment and control market. And with those impending changes come the requisite early warnings. When I first started covering IT, corporate networks were largely based on highly secure mainframe computers. These mainframes communicated with dumb terminals at end users' desks, using proprietary networking technologies to do so. PCs were viewed as potentially dangerous interlopers that could taint the otherwise

Turns, Turns, Turns
December 1, 2005

Strapped for cash? If you cut down on inventory and improve your turnover, you might just free up a good amount. By Robert Ain With all due respect to Pete Seeger and The Byrds, every season is an important time to look at turns—inventory turnover, to be specific. Inventory turns are a subject that everyone talks about and very few actually manage in a disciplined, organized process. At the end of the day, improving inventory turns is the best way to improve cash flow and free up dollars for spending on other revenue-producing parts of your business. For example, let's say that you are