Hawthorne, Calif.

Editor in chief of Dealerscope

Like many specialty dealers at this year’s CEDIA Expo, Bill Skaer was looking for products, solutions and strategies that will work for a wide range of customer demographics. With pocketbooks tightening and competition increasing, “Any customer worth having is worth winning” goes the mantra among independent dealers and specialty retailers.

Gary Yacoubian, Myer-Emco, Gaithersburg, Md.: “We were profitable, in 2007, and succeeded in places we didn’t expect to, especially with our residential networking initiatives and with custom. Of course, we were hit by declining ASPs in flat panel and the disappearance of rear projection, but we finished out the year stronger than it began. “At CES, we’re not on a search and destroy mission but rather, are looking for any interesting convergence technologies. “I feel that there’s a limit to what the economic and housing downturn can do to us. People will still be getting married, having kids, and needing to

What product trends and new technologies intrigued attendees at the Denver convention this year – and how do they expect those products to help them better their businesses, with the dreaded Black Friday/fourth quarter just around the bend? Here, a couple of opinions from those we bumped into on the show floor on Day Two… John Flanner, Flanner’s Home Entertainment, Brookfield, Wisc.: “It’s been a really good CEDIA Expo. From what I’ve seen here, the industry is clearly trying to provide more complete customer solutions. The focus in the last couple of years has been on TV technology, but that’s less

Retailers talk about what they hope to get out of CES. “We will be making a minimal amount of appointments this year to give us a better opportunity to walk the show and see some new technology and innovations for home theater, be it new products/accessories or furniture—items that will enhance the viewing experience for our customers.” - Pam Crane, Executive Vice President, Ken Cranes Home Entertainment, Hawthorne, Calif.

Retailers talk about what they hope to get out of CES. “Last year was my first CES with Ken Cranes and it was meeting after meeting, and it was the same at the Fall CEDIA. Not this time, though. We plan on setting up a couple of non-local meetings and then spend our time looking at technologies we don’t currently deal with for the future. We’ll divide up and look at all the integration, wireless and computer technologies to see where we’re going with all of that—and frankly, there’s no other place than CES where you can find all of that under

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