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Best Buy’s Dunn Upbeat On Chain’s Holiday Prospects

New York – Best
Buy should have a happy holiday season with the national chain emphasizing
connectivity products, service and “being there on price,” according to Brian
Dunn, CEO.

During the chain’s
Holiday Media Day at its loft space at Broadway and Canal Street here this
morning, Dunn reiterated what he said in Best Buy’s recent investor
that the chain continues to gain share and that he sees hopeful signs
for the holiday selling season.

“This will be my
25th Christmas season with Best Buy,” Dunn related and cracked, “and, as
always, it is our most important season ever.”

Dunn said Best Buy
considers connectivity products to include flat-screen TVs, smart phones,
netbooks and notebook PCs, and digital imaging products. “Those categories are doing
well,” he noted, and will continue to show growth for Best Buy this holiday

In terms of
service, Best Buy will rely on the capabilities of the Geek Squad and its Best
Buy Mobile stores to make sure consumers can understand and enjoy their

When asked about
the complexity of today’s CE products, Dunn said, “Complexity is our friend. It
helps us provide more technology to our customers and more service” so they
will enjoy their purchases. As an example, he said Best Buy Mobile’s mantra is
that they want consumers to “walk out working” with their smartphones.

Addressing industry
talk of deeper price cuts in CE this season, Dunn insisted that Best Buy will
“be there on price,” and later added, “Our products are tagged at the lowest
price point, and we won’t be beat. That’s what we always do.”

When questioned
about adequate inventories for the holidays, Dunn said Best Buy is “strong” in
many areas where the chain “placed bets where we need to be” in a strong

Dunn said market
share is up but “we are not driving that by price points. You have to be able
to provide selection, install [products] and be priced right.”

When asked about
Circuit City’s departure, Dunn noted, “Many asked us, ‘It put a lot of
customers in play.’ It did and we gained share. But Circuit City’s departure
doesn’t mean we have fewer competitors. There is no shortage of competition. We
compete against Disney World, restaurants … really any business that goes
after discretionary income.”

And Dunn
reiterated what he said during the financial conference call earlier this
month: “This is a great time to be a consumer. There are values” on fully
featured products “that have never been seen before.”

later today for updates on the Best Buy Holiday Media Day.