Car audio distributor group, the Elite Distributor Alliance, EDA, expects to control the majority of distributor buying power by the end of this year, with a 60 percent share of the 12 Volt distributor market, or $150 million in buying capacity.
So, after three years of building out the organization, EDA appears ready to assert its marketing and merchandising muscle. Its 12 members are starting to consolidate around EDA member brands such as Kenwood, JVC, Kicker and more, while pruning away other brands. “What we’re finding is, in a lot of cases, our members are dropping brands that aren’t part of EDA in order to strengthen the EDA program,” said Executive Director Jim Warren.
Other vendor members include VOXX, Brandmotion, iDatalink, Firstech, NuStart, Metra, Heise Lighting, SPL Boxes, and Dynaudio.
2018 was a record year for the group, said Warren. It hit $130 million in buying capacity. Members saw sales gains in the high single digits. It added distributor members DOW Electronics, Mid-State Distributing and Santa Fe Distributing. And it began selling products under its own label such as SPL Boxes and NuStart.
For 2019, EDA expects to enter the expeditor and fleet markets, including products catering to fleets such as van delivery services. And it plans to offer national fulfillment services for suppliers that need to get products to consumers. The group’s distributors together represent about 20 distribution points in the US and many have their own trucks offering same day or next day delivery, said Warren.
EDA also expects to add one or two additional distributor members in select markets. It will focus more keenly on marketing. This includes helping distributors market to their dealers as well as improving marketing by EDA to its distributors.
The group will greatly expand it’s online and social media presence, as well as co-develop long-term marketing programs with it’s vendor partners.
EDA members will exhibit for the first time at all KnowledgeFest events this year, representing EDA vendor partners through product training and product displays.
“There’s a lot more for us to do,” Warren said.