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Harvey Joins PRO Group

8/08/2006 12:24:00 PM Eastern

Lyndhurst, N.J. – Harvey Electronics, the New York metro area A/V specialty chain, has joined the Progressive Retailers Organization (PRO Group), ending a six-year affiliation with Home Theater Specialists of America (HTSA).

Franklin Karp, president/CEO of Harvey and a former HTSA board member, described the switch as “another step in the evolutionary process for Harvey and its dedicated staff.”

“They’re both excellent groups,” he told TWICE, “and HTSA was very helpful with our growth. But PRO will help us learn on a different level with a different kind of retailer. There’s a lot to be learned from the way those guys go to market.”

Karp said he doesn’t anticipate any changes in Harvey’s merchandise mix, as the two buying groups share many common lines.

At PRO, Harvey joins fellow New Jersey A/V specialists Sixth Avenue Electronics and Electronics Expo, and brings the group’s membership up to 17 dealers.

“The membership of PRO is extremely excited to welcome Harvey Electronics to the group,” said Dave Workman, PRO’s executive director. “The opportunity to work with someone of Franklin Karp’s skill set and reputation will serve to strengthen our organization, while working in return to benefit Harvey through our best practice sessions, vendor initiatives, program benefits and networking made available through PRO Group’s membership of high profile, independent consumer electronics retailers.” Other PRO dealers include Abt, Anderson’s, Bjorn’s, Car Toys, Crutchfield, Flanner’s, Huppin’s/OneCall, Ken Crane’s, ListenUp, MyerEmco, Ovation, Stereo Advantage, Tweeter and Vann’s.

Harvey, which operates eight stores and two Bang & Olufsen showrooms throughout the New York tri-state area, is in the midst of a proposed ownership change as two private equity firms seek seats on the company’s board in exchange for $4 million in capital. The funds would be used to refurbish stores and add new locations, the company said. Harvey has twice postponed its annual shareholders meeting as it first communicated the proposal to shareholders, and then failed to receive a sufficient number of responses.

Karp said the company is in the process of filing a new proxy statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission to place the proposals before shareholders again.