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Press Corner “Visions,

Press Corner “Visions, Rumours and Future predictions” What journalists are looking for at IFA By Joanna Stephens For Swedish TV technology journalist and EISA member Anders Albinsson, it’s the “visions, rumours and future predictions” that make IFA unmissable. “I’m not here looking for new products so much as trends,” he said, noting that the press pack descends on Berlin at the beginning of IFA buzzing with speculation as to who’s doing what, how, when and with whom. “And then, at the end of the week, you get to find out what rumours were true and what was just rumours.” Albinsson, who is representing the EISA member publications HemmaBio and Hifi Musik in Berlin, has attended every IFA except one since 1987. It is, he said, quite simply ‘the’ show for home electronics in Europe. “You get a total picture of the whole industry, which is hard to get from the viewpoint of your local market,” he added, listing IFA’s other USPs as access to the top echelons of the world biggest electronic companies, rubbing shoulders with “real experts” — such as engineers and product designers — that you would be unlikely to meet elsewhere, and exchanging news and views with fellow journalists from both home and abroad. Albinsson, who is also an ISF-certified calibrator and has served on the EISA Video jury panel since 1997, is not expecting IFA 2013 to deliver many surprises in terms of TV innovation. And despite the hope being invested in UHD, OLED and smart TV technology, he also believes the market is in for more turbulence, as unit prices continue to head south and new competition comes in from Chinese market vendors. “All this will threaten the established power structure. There will be winners and losers,” he predicted. And Albinsson has seen his fair share of both winners and losers during his 25 years at IFA: “I’ve seen a lot of things for the first time here — double cassette decks, DCC, RDS, minidiscs, laser TV, MP3, super-VHS, DAT, SACD, DVD, DVD audio, DVB-S, DVB-T, Blu- Ray…” It pays to remember, he observed, that sooner or later all of them disappear. Anders Albinsson Swedish TV journalist and EISA member Telematics Boom Driven By Apps The Telematics Awards 2013 is to be held for the first time at IFA, on Saturday, 7 September. IFA is also hosting the firstever telematics debate, featuring a five-strong panel of experts, on the same day. More than 160 guests have registered to attend the Awards. “It means that human telematics is catching up fast with vehicle telematics, which is already firmly established on the market,” said Katharina Klischewsky of Awards organiser Telematik-Markt.de. “However, it also underlines the impact and awareness that human telematics has achieved to date. In that context telematics apps are definitely the driving force. I am particularly pleased that attitudes in the healthcare system towards telematics have also changed.” TEDxBerlin Hosts City 2.0 Debate By 2050, it is estimated that 70% of the world’s population will live in cities. How will our living conditions change as urban populations swell? And how will the cities of the future evolve? Over the next two days, these questions — and the smart future of urban life — are being debated by more than 20 innovators, creatives and visionaries in the TEDxBerlin City 2.0 conference. An offshoot of the global TED Talks phenomenon, the presentations will examine why integrated architectural, technological and sociographic innovations are not just a utopian dream, but essential. 18

Trade News Retail Is Detail for Euronics Carpels prioritises local growth and integration hits the marketplace THE DEAL MAKERS Harvey Norman Expands Into Europe Euronics International, Europe’s largest retail group specialising in consumer electronics and domestic appliances, represents 6,000 independent retailers with more than 11,000 outlets. Here, the organisation’s President, Hans Carpels, shares his plans for the next three years… We will focus on local growth for our members by establishing a balanced score card. Furthermore, more emphasis will be placed on online integration. Despite the tough economic conditions, your stores are reporting growing sales. How have they achieved this? We feel that today’s consumers, when they spend money, want to be very sure their money is well spent. They want to be reassured. So it’s important that we have very well trained staff who are able to explain our products perfectly. Of course, it’s not always easy in countries where consumer spending is under pressure, but we try to outperform the market. On which markets is Euronics focusing? Last year was a year of big VIEW FROM THE FRONT expansion because Poland and Turkey were added to the Euronics territory. And in Sweden, we have managed to integrate the country’s leading white-goods group into our organisation. We hope this will lead to closer co-operation in the Nordic territories. How does your business model work? Let’s keep the essentials hidden — we don’t want the competition to learn too much! But let me tell you one of our mantras: ‘retail is Consumers are becoming more resistant to persuasion, according to Benedict Kober from Euronics Deutschland. Instead, he says, “they are willing to accept a performance-based mark-up in exchange for a good range of products”. Jose Maria Verdeguer from Sinersis, meanwhile, believes that Spain and Portugal are now entering the final phase of the downturn. Thanks to the region’s convenience-store model, proximity, professional advice and competitive pricing will be the basis of future success, Verdeguer suggests. Hans Carpels President of Euronics detail’. We happen to be very good at detailed work. You have very close ties with IFA. How significant is the event in terms of Euronics’ success? IFA is the main fair for every self-respecting retailer. In addition to new products, you can also see the trends for the coming months and exchange opinions with your partners from both the retail and industry sides of our business. Hall 22 Stand 102 “Today’s consumers, when they spend money, want to be very sure their money is well spent” Jo Wieden Managing Director, Harvey Norman Central Europe Jo Wieden, managing director at Harvey Norman Central Europe, is at the forefront of a Europe-wide expansion plan. The company has found success in Australia where almost half of its workforce is now based. Now the company is hoping to emulate this success in Europe. Jo Wieden explained the strategies behind this expansion plan… How is Harvey Norman progressing in Europe, and what is the company’s strategy to sustain this progress over the coming years? It’s no secret that the economy in our part of Europe has faced some big challenges in the past years, but we continue to grow our market share, advance our offering to our customers and strengthen our position in the market. I believe that the next decade will be a very exciting time for Harvey Norman in the European market. What are the main objectives of your visit to IFA? Our plan is to look at what products and technologies are coming, and to investigate opportunities with brands and products that we currently do not work with. Which product categories are of most interest to Harvey Norman? We are mostly interested in AV, IT and appliances – large and small – and the accessories associated with all these categories. Which product trends are the most important for your business? We are very interested in products that work together to create the connected home. How important is IFA for you, and why? IFA is very important to us. We send a team every year to investigate new products, trends, and advances in merchandising and display, and they always come back freshly motivated and inspired. www.ifa-international.org IFA International • Friday 6 th September 2013 19

IFA International