Ingram Micro, a larger distributor to the VAR channel, has been adding several vendors, such as Peerless, Belkin Pure A/V, Kenwood, ByDesign, Sharp Aquos and expanded lines of vendors they already had, like ViewSonic and BenQ, to include consumer SKUs. Sally Stanton, vice president of category management for Ingram Micro, doesn't think integrators will stop at just adding A/V.
"I think the A/V is step one, the next stop is going to come with home control and HVAC," she speculates. Stanton visits several VAR-related events throughout the year and says there has been an increased interest on the part of VARs for home-based products. She is also seeing it in security products that Ingram added to its mix a year ago and which VARs are scaling down for the home market.
But it's not just distributors that are supporting the digital integrator. CompUSA is also working with this new breed of VAR, which to the company is just a version of the VARs with whom they've already been partnering.