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NARDA Adds Service Division

Las Vegas — The United Servicers Association (USA) has become the new service division of the North American Retail Dealers Association (NARDA) under a merger agreement between the two trade groups.

The plan was announced here yesterday at the 2007 Service & Retail Convention, which runs this week at the Flamingo Hilton Hotel.

Under terms of the merger, USA will assume one of seven seats on NARDA’s newly reorganized board of directors. NARDA’s Leon Barbachano, CEO of Allen & Peterson Cooking & Appliance Center in Anchorage, Alaska, will remain chairman.

“USA members are well known for being among the best of the best servicers,” Barbachano said, “and will bring NARDA additional expertise in the service arena, further demonstrating NARDA’s commitment to the service segment of the business.”

USA was created by and for repair businesses 15 years ago to help fellow servicers compete in the marketplace through financial services, government relations, and educational, management and marketing programs.

For the past two Februarys, NARDA, USA and the Electronics Technicians Association have combined their conventions and educational institutes into one larger event called the Service & Retail Convention. That partnership, said USA board president Paul MacDonald, “laid the foundation for one cohesive association that can bring greater value to our members and better address challenges and opportunities. Industry consolidation is here to stay. We are not only better off as one organization, but are excited about the many potential opportunities ahead.”

NARDA, headquartered in Glenview, Ill., is a not-for-profit educational trade association for independent CE, majap and furniture retailers and now servicers. Its members account for more than 3,500 storefronts and $11 billion in annual sales.