MARTA celebrated its 40th anniversary in style, adding 12 retailers, giving the organization 106 members.
The new MARTA members are: Climatic Corp., Columbia, S.C.; Progressive Home, Las Vegas; ADI (Appliance Distributors Inc.), Lexington, Ky.; Trage Appliance, Chicago; Dixon's, Morganfield, Ky.; Wayne's Appliance, Evansville, Ind.; South Towns Appliance, Buffalo, N.Y.; Mountain High Appliance, Boulder/Denver, Colo; DVDT, Atlanta; Van Dries, Cadillac, Mich.; McMahans, Redding, Calif.; and Thayer Appliance, Ithaca, N.Y.
Michael Fisher of Nielsen's in Spencer, Iowa, and a board member of MARTA, said the group "did not bring in new members just for the sake of expansion. They have to fit in with our membership and MARTA's strategy."
He noted that any new members "must geographically fit. We don't want to have them compete against an existing member, unless both companies have a good relationship and are OK with it." And he added that the typical new member must have $6 million in annual sales or be a "dominant player in their market" and feature a "progressive, strong sales staff."
The backgrounds of some of the new members are varied. For instance, McMahans operates 20 stores in Northern California, Oregon and Nevada.
Progressive Home has only been in existence for 18 months and specializes in building upscale home theater systems for large single-family homes. The company has some retail sales but is mostly in the builder business.
And DVDT sells and installs big screen TVs for both residential and office markets.