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Room Air Conditioners In Short Supply

5/02/2011 12:01:00 AM Eastern

NEW YORK – Room air is a critical cash-flow category –
if you can get your hands on it.

For all but the largest retailers, window units have been in
short supply this season, due
in part dealers say, to supplychain
issues with Chinesemade
compressors.

While manufacturers including
Haier and LG have
been mum on the issue,
retailers have been less
reticent. “I’ve never had this
problem in 40 years,” noted Eddie Maloney, president of
Cowboy Maloney’s Electric City. “Normally I’m looking for
the best price. Now I’m just looking for air conditioners.”

Adam Thomas, appliance marketing senior VP for the
Nationwide Marketing Group concurred. “There is no
question that the compressor shortage is causing concern
as it relates to product availability,” he said. “We
continue to work closely to understand the scope of the
problem, but have been able to ensure adequate supply to
our biggest users.”

Even appliance powerhouse
P.C. Richard & Son, the
country’s seventh-largest majap
dealer, experienced shipment
delays. “Room air came
in a little later than planned,”
acknowledged president
Gregg Richard. “The vendors
were a week or two late in shipping. It wasn’t the end of
the world.”

Gregg said manufacturers have assured the chain that
its demand forecasts, which were made last year, will be
met. “We may have problems getting reorders, though.”

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