Denver - The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) is
enjoying a resurgence of its high-end audio, automation and home-networking
businesses, the buying group's senior executives reported.
Executive committee members Jon Robbins, principal of HiFi
House, and Brian Hudkins, owner of Gramophone, told TWICE that many of HTSA's 56
member integrators, A/V dealers and custom installers have seen a significant
"bump" in those categories, as customers elect to invest in their current homes
rather than purchase new ones.
The group, now in its 16th year, is gathered here
this week for its annual fall "Pump Up" meeting, the first without former
executive director Richard Glikes, who
resigned unexpectedly in August.
HTSA began interviewing potential successors during last
month's CEDIA Expo, Robbins said, and has narrowed a 12-person field down to
two candidates. A final decision is expected shortly, and the new executive
director will make his formal debut at International CES in January.
Hudkins said the executive committee was looking for someone
who can provide a strategic vision for the future, build great relationships
with current and prospective members and vendors, and serve as the charismatic
face of the group.
Hudkins, a past president of HTSA, and Robbins, who will
assume that post in January, described themselves as longtime friends of
Glikes, and wished him well in his new endeavor, a buying group start-up called
"Richard was the first and only executive director, and he
did a lot of amazing stuff for us," Robbins said.
Nevertheless, the theme of this week's meeting is "Time For
a Change," as HTSA seeks to infuse the group with new blood and fresh ideas.
"We're looking for younger members who know the new technologies" and can
benefit from older members' audio and business expertise, Robbins said.
To that end, the
group welcomed two new members, S3 and Echo Tech, as well as two new vendors,
Meridian America and Soundcast Systems.
HTSA will hold its spring meeting in San Diego in April.