ANAHEIM, CALIF. — Registration
for AVB/BrandSource’s upcoming
Spring Summit has exceeded year-ago
attendance levels, the $14-billion buying
Based on registration patterns, turnout
for the biannual meeting and buy fair could
surpass 2009 attendance by the double digits,
BrandSource said. The show, which
runs in tandem with the group’s Home Entertainment
Source (HES) A/V specialty
division meeting, will be held March 27-31
at the Hilton Anatole Hotel in Dallas.
Highlights of the event will include
appearances by Carter Oosterhouse,
host of the HGTV cable network series
“Carter Can,” and rising country
music artist Krista Marie.
Oosterhouse will help unveil a new
HGTV Green Home mattress collection
by Serta, a BrandSource exclusive.
“The name of the game is foot traffic and we have huge plans to leverage
the power of the Serta, HGTV and BrandSource brands to drive traffic
to our stores,” said Bob Lawrence, the
buying group’s CEO. “Our members
will benefit from a series of national
print, online and television ads directing
consumers to their local Brand-
Marie, whose tune “Drive It Like I
Stole It” was ESPN’s theme song for the
2009 NHRA drag race season, will perform
live for Spring Summit attendees.
In other BrandSource news, the
buying group has launched a national
sweepstakes, offering consumers a
chance to win a 2011 Ford Fiesta, laundry
pairs from Whirlpool and Mitsubishi
TVs. The promotion is one of
several national marketing initiatives
AVB will launch this year to expose
the BrandSource name to consumers
and drive additional traffic to its ecommerce
Web site and retail stores.
The sweepstakes is named “Win
With Force,” after the John Force
NHRA drag race team BrandSource
has sponsored since 2006. This year’s
program builds on past successes,
AVB said, and adds prizes from other
NHRA sponsors including Castrol,
Ford, Mac Tools, AAA Auto Club
of Southern California, and vacation
packages from Pleasant Holidays.
The sweepstakes is open to fans attending
NHRA events this season.
Entry boxes are also being sent to all
BrandSource dealers, and consumers
can also enter online at
BrandSource will additionally hold a
monthly drawing on select Energy Star
appliances and flat-panel TVs via the
recently redesigned Web site.
“It’s amazing to see how far we’ve
come in just a few seasons in terms of interacting
with the race fans,” said Lawrence.
“At our first promotional event in
2006 we gave away one large-screen TV.
With all of the team partners involved,
fans can now win over $100,000 worth
of prizes through the ‘Win With Force’
promotion this season.”
BrandSource and Team Force also
collaborated on an auction benefitting
Ronald McDonald House Charities,
a frequent benefactor of AVB.
Driver Ashley Force Hood’s Ronald
McDonald House-themed NHRA
Mustang funny car was auctioned off
earlier this month at the 48th Annual
World of Wheels event in Rosemont,
Ill., with all proceeds going to the charity.
Hood, who is sponsored by AVB/
BrandSource, raced the Mustang in
two events during the 2009 Full Throttle
drag racing series.
“I was thrilled to be able to help raise
awareness and donations for the Ronald
McDonald House Charities in Seattle
and Sonoma,” said Force Hood. “Brand-
Source, one of our major sponsors, is
very involved with this organization and
their CEO Bob Lawrence started talking
with us about getting involved in
early 2009. We got really excited about
all the opportunities to help so this program
came together very quickly.”
AVB is a member-owned and managed
merchandising group that provides buying
and merchandising services for more
than 4,500 retailers across the country.
Its BrandSource branding program leverages
the group’s 7,500 storefronts into
a national chain of retailers to maintain
top-of-mind recognition among consumers
searching for appliances, electronics