ProSource president/CEO Dave Workman (center) cuts the ribbon to the group’s new Lighting Technology and Learning Center in Dallas.
By Alan Wolf, YSN
ProSource, the AVB affiliate that caters to the A/V and custom install crowd, got off to a solid start in the first quarter of 2021.
The $5 billion-plus specialty tech buying group announced the addition of a major new PRO-level associate member and four new Custom Integrator (CI) class members to the organization during the first three months of the year. ProSource said its expanded member ranks reflect its growth strategy of “attracting diverse groups of businesses.”
The PRO associate newcomer is Curacao, the Los Angeles-based, full-line department store chain. The new associate member serves the Latino community with 12 locations in Arizona, Nevada and Southern California.
The new CI members joining ProSource include:
- All Metro Tech, in Salt Lake City, Utah
- Arizona Sound & Light, in Tucson, Ariz.
- Houston Audio & Home Theater, in Houston, Texas
- Vertex AV, based in Huntington Beach, Calif.
Explained Sherry Dantonio, ProSource Senior Director of Education and Membership Recruitment, “The evaluation process for new members is designed to attract best-of-the-best operations that will benefit from the variety of programs dedicated to our members’ productivity and profitability.”
Dave Workman, CEO and President of ProSource, added that the group’s growth strategy “targets businesses aligned with our group’s mission of delivering quality services and profitable processes.” He said the depth and breadth of opportunities ProSource offers all its members includes education through ProSource University; an exclusive Lighting Certification program utilizing the newly unveiled Lighting Technology and Learning Center in the Dallas Market Center for hands-on Level 2 training; an expanded healthcare program; HR support services; and ProSource Marketing programs that all contribute to their success.
Speaking of education, ProSource will hold a three-day, in-person basic tech training series this fall in Richmond, Va. Called ProSource Academy, the event will allow new technicians to gain hands-on experiences in a safe learning environment, the group said. Coursework is organized around classroom learning, a workbench practice zone and practical assessments designed to send the new recruit back to their company armed with the tools they need to be a productive member of the team.
“ProSource Academy is an opportunity for ProSource members to directly confront the pain point of finding qualified technicians to further the success of their businesses,” Workman said. “As ProSource University marks its first anniversary, we have the platform in place to offer employees a career roadmap shaping their own future. ProSource Academy is designed to jumpstart new recruit employees with a fast track to productivity.”
Elsewhere at ProSource, the aforementioned Lighting Technology and Learning Center was formally unveiled at the Dallas Market Center earlier this month. By the time Workman cut the ribbon at the May 3 welcome reception, the facility had already amassed a formidable vendor portfolio. The latest addition is AiSPiRE, a new lighting brand from WAC Landscape Lighting that is designed with custom integration in mind “to elevate the human experience of light while connecting on a deeper level with integrators and their clients in the space,” the company said.
“Painting with light changes the environment from lighting to living,” said Patrick Laidlaw, Director of Business Development-Integration for AiSPiRE. “We’re honored to support ProSource within the new Lighting Technology and Learning Center that will provide an opportunity for retail and design-build customers to learn about lighting applications and advancements in an immersive setting.”
AiSPiRE joins a growing roster of Lighting Center suppliers that also includes Savant/USAI Lighting (smart luxury lighting fixtures); Vantage (end-to-end human-centric lighting system); DMF Lighting (flexible, high-performance LED downlighting solutions); Colorbeam ( recessed fixtures, tape and accent lighting, and outdoor landscape lighting); and American Lighting’s Proluxe line (specification-grade linear and task lighting products).
The customized Lighting Center space was designed by David Warfel and Mark Langston, both of Light Can Help You, a lighting design firm and exclusive ProSource partner for education. The space features multiple residential rooms showcasing smart home systems and devices for the benefit of ProSource members with the support of the vendor partners. The space also hosts live ProSource Lighting Certification training sessions and will be utilized for creating video demonstrations for online learning, and is available for individual ProSource members and vendors to host exclusive influencer and customer events.
ProSource began to formally pursue the profitable and high-growth LED downlighting and task and landscape lighting categories in 2019 by forming a 12-member lighting and shade committee and bringing in Warfel as an exclusive advisor.
A member-governed, not-for-profit cooperative, ProSource is the largest specialty and consumer-electronics merchandising group in the country with more than 550 specialty retailers and custom integrators on board.
BrandSource, a unit of YSN publisher AVB Inc., is a nationwide buying group for independent appliance, furniture, mattress and CE dealers.