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Nebraska Voted Best Regional

10/10/2005 02:00:00 AM Eastern

For the second consecutive year, Nebraska Furniture Mart has taken home top TWICE honors within a regional playing field filled with worthy competitors.

What makes the brown- and white-goods emporium a standout with TWICE voters and consumers throughout Kansas and Nebraska? One key to the company's success is its approach to market, which blends the best of multiple distribution channels. Part warehouse club, with its cavernous superstores and opportunistic stack-'em-high buys; part specialty retailer, with its more than 185,000 in-stock CE and appliance products; and part department store, with its premium brands, home furnishings and richly appointed vignettes, Nebraska Furniture Mart offers something for everybody, whether shopper or vendor.

As Nebraska's electronics director Jay Buchanan noted, “We cater to all demographics, from mass to class. We offer the full spectrum, from the very promotional to the good, better and best. We want to be the Consumer Electronics Show for the consumer.”

The other critical ingredient in Nebraska's brew is customer service, as personified by founder Rose Blumkin — a.k.a. Mrs. B — the spunky Russian immigrant who espoused the simple proposition of “Sell cheap and tell the truth.”

Led now by CEO Irv Blumkin and president Ron Blumkin, that mandate continues to this day as reflected in the company's mission statement: “Our goal,” it reads, “is to excite, entertain and exceed customer expectations on a daily basis.”

Nebraska now accomplishes that through four locations: the main 77-acre campus, with its furniture store, appliance and electronics center, and clearance center and factory outlet; the massive 712,000-square-foot Kansas City, Kan., superstore; a 45,000-square-foot builders' showroom in Des Moines, Iowa; and its 24,000-square-foot flooring, majaps and Sony Electronics store in nearby Clive, Iowa.

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