Alltrade to help indies break into CI market

AV and CI distributor Alltrade has revealed its plans to roll out a programme to help independent retailers break into the custom installation and home automation market.

Speaking exclusively to ERT at the recent Alltrade Trade Show, managing director Steve Simper (pictured) said it hoped to introduce some “vastly discounted” products to enable retailers to have showrooms and demonstration areas without having a huge financial burden.

“We’re looking to assist retailers from that point of view. If someone wanted to create a display area [or showroom], we’d want to advertise that on their behalf, and obviously they would want to advertise that themselves, because ultimately [consumers] want to see something working,” said Mr Simper.

“So if there are retailers interested, it certainly would be of interest to us, because we’re talking about rolling out a programme that would enable them to take [it] on and make a display area. So they’re not having to invest too much money.”

Mr Simper claimed that although its current training programmes are aimed mainly at installers, there is a real opportunity for retailers to create a ‘major’ add-on in the CI marketplace.

He also believes that wi-fi is an opportunity that many independent retailers may be missing out on, as it’s an “easy sell and fairly straightforward”.

“I don’t know anyone that hasn’t got broadband these days, I don’t know anyone that hasn’t got a wi-fi router, and I don’t know anyone that hasn’t got a problem with it,” Mr Simper added.

Knowledgeable retailers, who can sell better products and demonstrate the benefits, could find a lucrative opportunity, according to Mr Simper.

He also claimed that routers, such as Ubiquiti, which Alltrade signed a distribution agreement with last year, offer quality wi-fi with the ease of being plug-and-play.