Pro Group Changes Vendor Strategy
With a new program designed to improve the product supply chain and buying power of its specialty retail customers, The Pro Group hopes to give independent dealers a competitive edge enjoyed by much larger companies.
“This changes the business model of the group,” said Dave Workman, the Pro Group’s executive director.
In a first of its kind for The Pro Group, the buying consortium has partnered with Panasonic to develop a supply chain process that can tie all of the group’s 18 members into the manufacturer’s Collaborative Planning, Forecasting and Replenishment (CPFR) system. The program also gives The Pro Group the buying status of a single customer, allowing all members to buy Panasonic product. In the past, Panasonic would only sell directly to Pro Group retailers that buy $4 million or more in product a year, said John Iacoviello, president sales and marketing group for Panasonic Consumer Electronics Company, adding that the policy restricted the manufacturer’s ability to work closely with innovative and growing retailers.