San Antonio — The Progressive Retailers Organization was at the Westin La Cantera Hill Coun
After almost three months in operation as the new JVC Mobile Company of America, JVC said it will add about 200 to 250 new car audio specialists to its distribution mix this year.
The JVC car audio brand was part of JVC Company of America in Wayne, N.J., until this April, when it was spun off as a separate company with one of its goals being to focus on car audio specialists. Previously, JVC car audio was sold mainly through mass merchants.
Bill Turner, the new VP of JVC Mobile Company, said JVC Mobile is adding about one account a day and that it has hired 18 independent manufacturer's rep firms, marking the first time in 25 years that JVC has hired outside reps for any of its audio or video product groups.
The company launched April 1 to put more of an emphasis on car audio. “What senior management realized was our other product divisions seemed to get the lion's share of attention because we do billions in those other categories, where we do hundreds of millions in car,” said Turner. JVC's inside sales reps by nature tended to focus on the higher-ticket categories, he said, although car stereo continued to grow “even though the structure wasn't focused on car audio.”
“If you are a sales person, you say, I can sell 10 plasma TVs and 10 camcorders and make some pretty huge numbers vs. selling the car audio side,” Turner said
Turner said the former structure also favored mass merchants over 12-volt specialists because the inside sales reps were already selling TVs and audio to the mass merchants, and it was relatively easy to add car audio as well. The new JVC Mobile Company will continue to sell to mass merchants, including Best Buy, Circuit City and Wal-Mart, but it will also pursue the specialists under the Arsenal sub-brand, Turner said.
Two of the company's key products this year include the KD-AVX2 single-DIN DVD with a built-in 3.5 inch screen which is currently on allocation and the KW-AVX706 double-DIN DVD with MP3, dual satellite radio service (either XM or Sirius), 5.1 surround and Dolby Pro logic at a street price of $799.