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Startup AudioXperts: Luxury Market Underserved In Audio

8/08/2012 11:56:29 AM Eastern
New York - Startup luxury brand AudioXperts revealed more details about its positioning and marketing strategy yesterday at a press conference where founder Eli Harary called the luxury market for home audio products "vastly underserved."
 Eli Harary
 Under-TV consoles from AudioXperts at $1999 and $3,999 feature slim designs, and the top model adds same-size wireless outboard subwoofer that can be stacked under the console.

Harary, a 40-year audio-industry veteran, described the selection of home audio products for luxury consumers as "very limited," and said most of the available products "pay little to no attention to design or simplicity of operation."

He also said sales of luxury-brand products in general are "still skyrocketing" despite the slow-growth economy.

During the event, AudioXperts demonstrated its tabletop docking music systems and two 4TV under-TV audio "consoles." The latter are slim audio platforms that sit on top of furniture and under a flat-screen TV. The products will be joined at the CEDIA Expo by the Korners series of "room/designer-friendly" high-performance component speakers and powered subwoofers.

With these products, the brand is not targeting a specific age demographic or audiophiles but is targeting design-oriented homeowners who want products that fit with their lifestyles, desire products from luxury brands, and enjoy quality sound and entertainment, he continued.

Luxury buyers, he noted, have changed over the years. "They are more sophisticated about not wanting something complex," he said, and they expect the products to deliver performance and style.

To that end, Harary said, the company is using "the finest materials" and "latest technologies" and packaging them in "sophisticated, flexible, and intuitive designs" that "ensure an extraordinary user experience"; eliminate the "confusion, chaos and clutter" of component-audio systems; and in the case of the 4TV audio consoles, deliver component-audio quality.

Because these consumers "appreciate the luxury-brand experience," including the buying experience, AudioXperts has to date signed up six of what Harary called "the finest CE retailers" to date, including Bjorn's of Texas, ListenUp of Denver, Worldwide Stereo in Pennsylvania, and Crutchfield, which are all members of the Progressive Retailers Organization (PRO Group). More retailers will be announced after the CEDIA Expo, where the company plans to unveil its series of "room/designer-friendly" high-performance component speakers and powered subwoofers. Korners

The company has shown the products only to seven dealers so far, and six of them signed up, Harary noted. More dealers will be signed up as production ramps up.

Retailers selected by AudioXperts are capable of presenting better products through salespeople who can explain the benefits of such products as $1,999 and $3,999 audio consoles, he said.

In their online stores, such retailers are also capable of presenting better products, in part through interactive communication via live phone calls or online chats.

In the U.S., only about 70 retailers with 110 to 120 outlets have the capability to educate consumers about luxury products, Harary noted. The company has also signed up European distributors to target such retailers.

Although AudioXperts will sell its products through its own website, the company will support its dealers by handing over the profits of a sale made to a consumer in the dealer's market, Harary said.

The company isn't setting unilateral retail prices because it doesn't need to if it chooses the right dealers, Harary noted.
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