Pioneer joined the growing number of CE vendors offering direct-to-consumer sales channels. Yesterday, June 7, the company launched a Web store that offers Pioneer products, including models not available in the United States.
Amy Friend, vice president, corporate communications, Pioneer, noted that the Pioneer Elite brand of higher-end electronics would not be available through this channel at this time, and would remain in the authorized dealer channel only. Instead the company is focusing on more of its mass market products, as well as items dealers are no longer willing to carry in high volume but still generate sales for Pioneer, such as CD-based products like burners and portable players.
Additionally, the company will be selling products not carried by U.S. dealers. For example, at the Pioneer line show in New York, the company showed a set of bookshelf speakers with cabinets made from old Whiskey barrels. The barrels allegedly provide unique properties that lead to better audio reproduction. The speakers are on sale in Japan, but U.S. dealers are hesitant to carry such a product, according to Friend. “We’re going to test it and see how it works [selling it on the Web],” she says.