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Expect the Unexpected at International CES

A CES 12 Volt Game Plan

January 2013 By Todd Ramsey

Times they are a-changing. Everyone in the Consumer Electronics Industry knows change is the only constant. Technology is not just in the home, car and on the desktop, but it’s increasingly in the consumer’s hands with portable devices and on-the-go technologies. This is one area in which 12 volt companies and retailers will find unexpected, yet exciting opportunity at the upcoming 2013 International CES show.

Of course traditional categories like car audio and security products will also have exciting twists and turns. Without letting the cat out of the bag, suffice it to say digital audio storage/playback and significant data-bus integration technologies (security, remote start, audio, control) have pushed the products in these traditional categories to new heights. Many of these companies are focusing on ‘solution based’ products that speak directly to the need for retailers to be faster, more profitable and provide a reliable product to the end user. That’s extremely exciting.

Retailers Making the Trip
For many 12 volt retailers, it’s a commitment to travel to Las Vegas to the CES show, whether it’s for the whole 4-day show or a just few days. Retailer Jeff Meece at Meece Car Audio is driving up from his shop in Lancaster, CA. “We make the trip to CES every year and it’s an important part of our continued growth” explains Meece. It turns out that Meece Car Audio is in its fourth consecutive year of growth since opening doors in 2008.

Many retailers come from much further distance to attend CES. Derek Pace of Certified Sounds and Kent Izuka of Security and Sound Systems, both from the island state of Hawaii, plan to attend CES to review new products from existing vendors and search for exciting new avenues for profitability. “I want to continue growth in audio and traditional categories, but we also have a huge opportunity in non-traditional categories that encompass portable devices in the car, apps related to the car and interoperability of devices between car and home,” states Derek Pace.

Hawaii is not the only remote state with attendees. Alaska retailers Spencer Richardson of Distinctive Ride in Wasilla and John Schwartz of Perfectionist Auto Sound & Security in Anchorage are among the many from the 49th US State that’ll be attending. Like many retailers in cold climates, they’ll be balancing the time spent in Las Vegas with a busy remote starter season, so a productive CES visit is important.


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