LAS VEGAS -Sister brands Akai and Sansui exhibited at International CES in a bid to re-enter the U.S. market through distributor Nova Technologies of Alexandria, Va.
In Canada, C.E.I.D. Corp. of Montreal has begun to market the two brands.
In the United States, Nova is positioning Sansui home and car audio as an entry-level brand marketed to buying groups, national chains and distributors. The positioning will match that of Sansui-brand TVs, which are manufactured and marketed under the Sansui name by Orion and sold through some U.S. buying groups, said Nova senior managing partner Frank Iaconis.
The Akai brand will be positioned as a step-up home and car audio/ video brand, targeted to buying groups and select independent retailers but no distributors.
The company will advertise the brands through cable TV and Web ads. Shipments begin in the spring.
Nova was founded about three years ago to market the Prima brand of China-made direct-view TVs, which are available primarily through buying groups MARTA and Nationwide and are positioned between promotional and midprice products, Iaconis said. The company hopes this month to announce agreements to corral more brands for its stable.
Sansui-manufactured and -branded products will include shelf systems priced up to a suggested $179; Dolby Digital receivers priced up to about $299; boomboxes; and car audio products, which will comprise head units up to $189, CD changers, amps and speakers. A home-theater-in-a-box system, planned for the second half, will feature a DVD-receiver and speakers.
Akai-manufactured and -branded products will include two direct-view high-resolution 4:3 flat CRT TVs priced up to a suggested retail of about $1,299 for a 32-inch model. The other products comprise three Dolby Digital/DTS receivers priced up to $499; seven to eight shelf systems up to $329; a $699 home theater system consisting of a DVD-receiver and speakers; a $249 DVD player; and car A/V.