Buying Groups Rally In '04 - Twice

Buying Groups Rally In '04

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The industry's seven major retail buying organizations are facing pressures from big box chains and direct-sell PC suppliers head on with new programs, stronger vendor commitments and renewed marketing muscle.

And whether it's Brand Source/AVB's vendor-direct warehousing program; Nationwide's turnkey video fixturing; HTSA's national footprint plans; Best Brands Plus' branding effort; or the groups' financing, insurance, credit and extended warranty offers, independent dealers are clearly embracing the value-adds, as reflected in membership gains at MARTA, NATM and PRO Group.

The accompanying listing provides a snapshot view of the groups, their buying clout (based on 2003 sales) and key contact information.

A Who's Who Of Buying Groups

Brand Source/Associated Volume Buyers (AVB)

100 South Anaheim, Suite 250

Anaheim, Calif. 92805

Phone: (714) 502-9620

Fax: (714) 502-9627

Executive director: Bob Lawrence

Annual Volume: $4 billion

Number of members: 1,800

Home Entertainment Source (HES)

(A division of Brand Source)

100 South Anaheim, Suite 250

Anaheim, Calif. 92805

Phone: (714) 502-9620

Fax: (714) 502-9627

General manager: Jim Ristow

Annual Volume: $600 million

Number of members: 300

Home Theater Specialists of America (HTSA)

501 E. Uwchlan Avenue

Chester Springs, Pa. 19425

Phone: (610) 363-9055

Fax: (610) 363-9065

Executive director: Richard Glikes

Annual volume: $450 million

Number of members: 48

MARTA Cooperative Of America

10165 North 92nd Street

Scottsdale, Ariz. 85258

Phone: (480) 443-0211

Fax: (480) 443-3354

Executive director: Warren Mann

Annual volume: $2.1 billion

Number of members: 106

Mega Group USA/Best Brands Plus

7511 Capital Drive

Germantown, Tenn. 38138

Phone: (901) 753-8243

Fax: (901) 755-3076

Executive director: Pat Reed

Annual volume: $2 billion

Number of members: 800

Nationwide Marketing Group

203 South Stratford Road, Suite B

Winston-Salem, N.C. 27103

Phone: (336) 722-4681

Fax: (336) 714-2671

President/director: Ed Kelly

Annual volume: $8 billion

Number of members: 2,400

NATM Buying Corporation

450 7th Avenue, Suite 1309

New York, N.Y. 10123

Phone: (212) 239-7222

Fax: (212) 714-0403

President/executive director: Bill Trawick

Annual volume: $3 billion

Number of members: 12

Progressive Retailers Association (PRO Group)

910 Skokie Blvd., Suite 115

Northbrook, Ill. 60062

Phone: (847) 509-4720

Fax: (847) 509-4724

Executive director/COO: Roger Heuberger

Annual volume: $1.6 billion

Number of members: 16

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