MERA’s Industry Forecast
As a result of its board of trustees’ 2005 strategic planning session, the Mobile Enhancement Retailers Association (MERA) established a new focus, outlining new goals to drive the association as it aims to elevate the success of specialty retailers in the mobile enhancement industry. One of the stated goals was that “MERA will be the first place retailers turn for industry insight and guidance.” To this end, MERA’s primary objective is to “increase our ability to collect, categorize and analyze data on emerging industry issues.”
With input from select industry professionals who comprise MERA’s newly formed Forecast Advisory Committee, MERA has compiled its first “Industry Forecast.” This report provides direction not only for retailers but also for MERA as a trade association, giving us guidance for development of well-targeted workshops and programs. The report calls for the evolution of installers and salespersons that are more technical, with a better understanding of integration solutions and OEM bus systems. In other words, mobile enhancement retail owners must be prepared to develop a breed of specialists who can meet the challenges of today’s vehicles.
The interviewees for this first Industry Forecast were Chris Cook, AAMP of America; Stephen Witt, Alpine Electronics of America, Inc.; Christopher Dragon, Harman Consumer Group; David Salemi and Bernie Sapineza, Ibiquity Digital Corp.; Manville Smith, JL Audio; James Geschke, Johnson Controls; and Robert Lopez, Panasonic.