Roger’s Sound in South Carolina, a car audio chain with 3 stores, entered the golf cart market 60 days ago and believes certain other 12 volt shops should do the same.
An institution in SC for 42 years, Rogers Stereo added golf carts, aiming at aging baby boomers who live in sprawling retirement communities that can span over many acres.
“You have a whole bunch of access to restaurants and grocery stores and you don’t have to drive your car. You can use a golf cart,” said Frank Rogers, owner of the chain.
The golf carts sell for about $7,500 with a margin in the 20 percent range and Rogers also services the carts. He’s sold 8 in the past two months.
A golf cart manufacturer, JH Global, located nearby in the Greenville area, approached Rogers when its local dealer went out of business. The owner had met Rogers a couple of years back at a golf tournament and sought him out. Rogers said, “I started researching the business and realized the similarities between the two [between golf carts and 12 volt retailing].” The carts run on multiple 12 volt batteries.
He made an initial investment of $70,000 to $75,000 for about 11 carts. And he hired a manager to handle that division.
“I can park them outside. I’ve got a lot of room here. But guys in a shopping center can park them outside,” he said.
He hopes the new carts will bring in a $1/2 million in the first year followed by $1 million in the second year.
To get the word out he goes out to local retirement communities and offers a cart to a select individual at the communities at a discount to help seed the market and encourage others in the community to buy one.
Rogers began as an expeditor/retailer with Audiovox in 1976. At it’s peak, Rogers Stereo had 5 stores. It now has 30 employees including 10 to 15 installers. The chain carries Alpine, Kenwood, Pioneer, Rockford, Focal, VOXX and others. It caters to both high and low end installations.
Rogers believes other 12 shops can benefit from selling the carts and wants to act as a distributor for the JH Global carts to the 12 volt market. As a long time member of the MESA (Mobile Electronics Specialists of America) buying/marketing group, he hopes to spread the word to other MESA members.
Golf carts are usually sold through RV dealers and 4 wheeler type stores. “I don’t think what I’m doing has ever been done before,” Rogers said.
Those who want to reach Rogers can do so at 864-230-3020.