During the first Consumer Electronics Supply Chain Academy at CES 2007 (see pg. 100 for more on the conference), all segments of the consumer electronics industry supply chain—including retailers, manufacturers, distributors, TPLs, service providers and solution providers—addressed the growing challenges to increase revenues and gross margins while taking costs out of the total CE supply chain. This article is the first in a series that will highlight the objectives, strategies and tactics introduced in a true spirit of collaboration by the leaders in the industry at the CECSA conference. The first deals with the initiatives of two premier retailers: Best Buy and Circuit City. Executives

In 2004, Best Buy announced its strategic intent to bring about a cultural transformation of the company by launching a program called “Consumer Centricity.” As Brad Anderson, the company’s vice chairman and CEO put it, “This enables us to engage more deeply with customers by empowering employees to deliver tailored products, solutions and services to customers through our stores, Web sites, call centers and in-home services.” In short, Best Buy was proposing to turn the typical retail information flow on its head, from “top-down to bottom-up” where consumer demand would ultimately drive its operations and supply chain—from the factories halfway around the world, to

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