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Distributors Bulk Up On LG And KEF

As spring rapidly approaches, tier-one brands are blooming within the two-step distribution channel.

Among the latest line card additions: LG Electronics USA at AVAD, and KEF, Hikvision and Zigen at the PowerHouse Alliance.

For Scottsdale, Ariz.-based AVAD, the new pact brings LG’s home entertainment line — including OLED and Super UHD TVs with nano-cell technology — to the distributor’s custom-installing dealers and system integrators.

“With LG’s focus on the premium segment of the U.S. video market, custom-installation dealers are very important to us,” said Rick Calacci, LG’s senior VP, home entertainment sales. “Joining forces with AVAD complements our existing distribution channels and brings cutting-edge LG technologies to even more custom dealers.”

Jon Zabel, AVAD’s sales and vendor management VP, said the partnership reflects a new post-Ingram Micro AVAD, which was sold last summer to a private equity firm. Its new parent, Kingswood Capital Management, has since invested in new warehouses, sales centers and regional staff under a freshly minted management team led by CEO Tom Jacoby and president Fred Farrar.

“We’re thrilled to provide a wider breadth of premium display brands for our dealers” — including LG’s top-of-the-line Signature W-series “wallpaper” TV — “along with more profit and revenue opportunities,” Zabel said. “The new AVAD means giving our dealers exciting new choices such as LG along with leveraging our national footprint and expansion plans into new markets to provide more solutions for more dealers.”

Meanwhile, the 12-distributor PowerHouse Alliance (PHA) has upped its own ante with the additions of Hikvision, KEF and Zigen, with inventory and dealer support available immediately.

“Partnering with Hikvision, KEF and Zigen was a no-brainer for the PowerHouse Alliance,” said the group’s executive director Dennis Holzer. “Each of these new brands is well known in their respective fields and is in high-demand. We look forward to a mutually beneficial relationship with all three brands.”

KEF is an acclaimed, 56-year-old British loudspeaker manufacturer; Hikvision designs and manufactures video surveillance cameras and related equipment; and Zigen offers a diverse line of matrix and presentation switches, extenders, distribution amplifiers and HDMI cables.

PHA is a national consortium of 12 regional wholesale distributors serving custom installers, specialty dealers, large retailers, and buying groups in the residential and commercial A/V, home entertainment, security, IT and CE accessories markets.