Best Buy Officially Enters Car Expeditor Market

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Best Buy and Car Toys officially announced they will begin selling car AV/navigation equipment to car dealerships and fleet managers (known as expeditor sales) through Best Buy stores.

Best BuyThe plan is for Best Buy to extend its car AV sales beyond consumers.  It will provide “complete car electronics sales and installation services for car dealerships, fleet managers and insurance companies,” it announced.

Best Buy would not state how many locations will offer the service, but a spokesman said, “Regarding number of stores, we don’t have any additional specifics on the rollout to share at this time, but the intent of the partnership is certainly to leverage the footprint of 1,000 installation bays and 3,000 certified Geek Squad Autotechs.”

Car Toys is the largest independent car specialist chain with about 50 stores in the U.S.

Best Buy said the program is part of a broader strategy to “capture value in the after-market car electronics space, an industry which is undergoing a new wave of innovation and advancements driven by the customer’s need for technology and connectivity in their vehicle.”

As we reported two years ago, Best Buy and Car Toys have been conducting a test trial of expeditor sales at Best Buy through several Best Buy locations including some in Boise, ID and Minneapolis, MN.  The trials included products offered by Pioneer, Kenwood and Rosen.

Best Buy operates more than 1,000 installation bays and claims to have 3,000 certified Geek Squad “Autotechs” on the payroll. Its Autotechs include 80 of the world’s 140 223 Master Installers that are MECP certified and it performs more than a million installations a year.

Lisa Farrell, Senior VP for Best Buy said, “The commercial car electronics business is a multi-billion dollar market and Car Toys is an industry leading retailer that brings a wealth of experience in specialized mobile electronics that serves as a great complement to the fulfillment capabilities we have through our Best Buy retail locations.”

Car Toys’ chairman Dan Brettler said, “There are tremendous synergies between Best Buy and Car Toys. Not only do we possess the expertise to understand the commercial customer and to support any install, but we also share the commitment to providing the best customer experience possible. We look forward to this mutually beneficial relationship and to the opportunities we see ahead in the commercial car electronics business.”


Source: Best Buy

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  1. “Not only do we possess the expertise to understand the commercial customer and to support any install, but we also share the commitment to providing the best customer experience possible.”

    I’ve been an expeditor EXCLUSIVE to car dealerships for 19 years, and 75% of the customers that choose to go the “Big Box” way, end up coming back to me at their local dealership because of a horrible, mis-informed, poorly sold and installed product. They do NOT have the close relationships we have with the owners, sales managers, sales team, service managers, and technicians at the dealership.

    These are business relationships cultivated over a long period of time, with mutual understanding and respect for each other, and a commitment as a TEAM to make the dealership’s customer happy. I have access to ALL technical and wiring diagrams for whatever car I’m working on through the dealership’s service department, and we are constantly training and teaching each other about new cars and systems in them.

    I have been MECP certified since the first year it was offered, 1992, and it has gotten me exactly NOTHING in return for it, and it means absolutely NOTHING that Best Buy and Car Toys have some MECP certified staff as well. In a retail “speed install” environment, basic knowledge and skills are skipped in pursuit of volume of cars per day, and the results are less than stellar for the customer.

    Until MECP certification is supported, required, and reinforced on a manufacturer level, say doubling the product warranty if installed by MECP installers, it’s just fluff in the clouds with absolutely nothing to back it.

    Leave the personal one-on-one business expeditor relationships with the small independent business that can take the time for the customer, and the businesses they serve, to give them a more personalized experince and higher-quality install.

  2. I see this as a way to way to put out the rumors they are getting out of 12volt. Also another way to show there vendors / partners they are making an attempt to grow a category that they have failed on over the last 5 years. Here is a prime example of a broken platform that is truly grasping for straws to make a last ditch effort for 12 volt to work in there environment.

    Ask your self what independent smaller retail store / expediter is really going to support BB, when they have been fighting them over the last 20 years. Independents real partners are there sales representatives, and local Distributors, that give them cutting edge technology and real service.

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