Convergence is Hell
Ovation Audio, the regional chain based in Indianapolis, has chosen what types of convergence it finds profitable to merchandise. At its Indianapolis and Louisville, Ky., locations, Ovation Audio runs a separate custom install showroom. "We have a showroom in both markets, adjunct to two of our retail stores, set up like a home theater system where a consumer can operate drapes, lighting and the home theater all with an (AMX Crestron) touch screen," Ovation President Gary McCormick said. "Consumers realize they can have this and pay us however-many thousands to get it. Of course we're talking about the upper 1 percent of the overall market, but we are definitely mid to upper end."
As such, Ovation Audio opted out of the camcorder business several years ago, but now DV camcorders have McCormick re-considering the category. He said the company has been mulling how to "build a better display that makes it easier to sell the stuff so they don't run down to Circuit City or Best Buy after 30 minutes for a better price, so you don't have to spend so much time (to close the sale)."
Probably one of the most successful cross-category merchandising displays at retail is Sony's Memory Stick display, first launched in May at Circuit City to demonstrate Memory Stick products used with Sony cameras, camcorders, printers, portable music players, voice recorders and Vaio personal computers.