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Thursday
Dec012011

Swimming Pool Retail Academy and P.K. Data research changing business climate of specialty pool retailers [News Release]



Atlanta, GA – According to new market analysis by P.K. Data and Swimming Pool Retail Academy, Internet purchases of pool products have increased from 1 percent to 9 percent of all in-ground residential swimming pool products sold in six years (2004 to 2010), representing $288 million in sales. Given that 68 percent of pool owners have traditionally purchased from specialty pool retailers, this rapid shift in market share threatens pool retailers disproportionately. P.K. Data and Swimming Pool Retail Academy have joined forces to compile a new series of research reports examining the threats facing the business of specialty pool retailers.

Results will be published as a series of helpful insights and analysis on www.SwimmingPoolAcademy.com between November 2011 and June 2012. They will also be part of P.K. Data’s larger body of syndicated research.

In addition to the nine-fold increase in online purchases of pool products, initial research results highlight changes in the traditional customer base of specialty pool retailers:  

  • A growing number of pool owners are more comfortable with ecommerce. Half of all pool owners are younger than age 55, and nearly half have college degrees (up from 40 percent in 2004).
  • 71 percent of pool owners view knowledgeable staff as the leading virtue of specialty stores, yet 72 percent of pool owners now use the Internet as their leading source of information on pool products.
  • 85 percent of pool owners who use the Internet recommend one or more online pool retail sites to their fellow pool owners.

Bil Kennedy, president of P.K. Data said, “P.K. Data has done research in the pool industry for over 20 years. If the rate of this change continues, specialty pool retailers may see a significant shift within their customer base. Retailers who are unprepared for the changes ahead could potentially lose 25 percent to 50 percent of their business over the next 10 years. Our new research aims to dive deep into this major change in consumer behavior, and we’re pleased to partner with Swimming Pool Retail Academy on this project.”

Larry J. Bloom, co-founder of Swimming Pool Retail Academy and former CEO of BioLab, said, “In my experience of working with pool and spa retailers, I see this trend as a major consideration for business strategy and planning. Traditional retailers must vigorously protect their current base of loyal customers to survive.” Larry and the other co-founders of Swimming Pool Retail Academy have helped thousands of specialty pool retailers achieve growth and business success throughout their careers.

About Swimming Pool Retail Academy

Swimming Pool Retail Academy provides consulting, education, and productivity tools for the retail swimming pool industry. Its initial product, How Pools Operate, is a brain-science-based, cost-effective, full-day online training course, which includes five hours of training covering six web-based lessons and several tools to help pool retail employees provide better sales and service while improving customer loyalty. Swimming Pool Retail Academy is a business unit of Xmente, LLC, a media and software company focused on better thinking for a brighter planet. For more information, visit www.SwimmingPoolAcademy.com.

About P.K. Data

P.K. Data has tracked the swimming pool and hot tub industry since 1992. Since then the firm has completed over 300 studies including consumer surveys, industry valuation analyses, channel opportunity assessments, competitive reviews and geographic market development studies. The firm also provides counsel as a component of merger and acquisition due diligence. The firm’s analysts are frequent speakers at industry symposia. P.K. Data studies have been referenced throughout the industry trade press as well as the popular media such as the Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, Fortune and major newspapers and broadcast outlets. For more information, visit www.pkdata.net.

Media contact:

Cathy Levendoski

Constant Communications

314-725-2594

clevendoski@constantgroup.com

Thursday
Dec012011

Former BioLab Executives Form Company [News Release]

Atlanta, GA – New research from P.K. Data and Swimming Pool Retail Academy clearly shows a growing threat for specialty pool retailers. Nearly three-fourths of pool owners are using the Internet as their primary source of pool information. This eye-opening data highlights the immediate need for pool retailers to protect their status as the leading source of pool information -- or risk losing customers.

To help specialty pool retailers address a challenging business environment, a group of pool industry veterans have formed Swimming Pool Retail Academy (www.SwimmingPoolAcademy.com), with the goal of helping pool retail employees jump-start their basic training to improve knowledge and job performance – ultimately creating customer loyalty.   

“More and more pool owners are turning to the Internet to research and purchase pool products,” said Bil Kennedy, president of P.K. Data. “Our research shows that 72 percent of pool owners say the Internet is their leading source of pool information, and 85 percent of pool owners who use the Internet recommend that their fellow pool owners shop at one or more online pool retailers. We are seeing a fundamental shift in consumer behavior, threatening the stronghold of specialty pool retailers.” 

Larry Bloom, co-founder of Swimming Pool Retail Academy and former CEO of BioLab, Inc., said, “Before forming Swimming Pool Retail Academy and building our first product, we asked a large group of leading pool retailers and industry colleagues about their key business concerns. They helped us understand where we could make a difference in their businesses and where the industry was struggling to provide answers. With a strong trend of pool owners turning to the Internet for product information and purchases, we realized that traditional, brick-and-mortar specialty pool retailers faced increased risk of losing loyal customers.”

The founders of Swimming Pool Retail Academy have a combined 100 years of pool industry and Internet experience. They include: 

  • Larry J. Bloom, former CEO of BioLab, Inc.
  • Tresa Kenny, former VP of Marketing Services at BioLab, Inc.
  • Steve Carlyle, former Director of Business Development at BioLab, Inc.
  • Adam B. Bloom, Internet software and media product marketer

About Swimming Pool Retail Academy

Swimming Pool Retail Academy provides consulting, education, and productivity tools for the retail swimming pool industry. Its initial product, How Pools Operate, is a brain-science-based, cost-effective, full-day online training course, which includes five hours of training covering six web-based lessons and several tools to help pool retail employees provide better sales and service while improving customer loyalty. Swimming Pool Retail Academy is a business unit of Xmente, LLC, a media and software company focused on better thinking for a brighter planet. For more information, visit www.SwimmingPoolAcademy.com.

About P.K. Data

P.K. Data has tracked the swimming pool and hot tub industry since 1992. Since then the firm has completed over 300 studies including consumer surveys, industry valuation analyses, channel opportunity assessments, competitive reviews and geographic market development studies. The firm also provides counsel as a component of merger and acquisition due diligence. The firm’s analysts are frequent speakers at industry symposia. P.K. Data studies have been referenced throughout the industry trade press as well as the popular media such as the Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, Fortune and major newspapers and broadcast outlets.

Media contact:

Cathy Levendoski

Constant Communications

314-725-2594

clevendoski@constantgroup.com

Monday
Oct312011

Industry Research Coming Soon

Stay tuned for the update. We will be making a major announcement and providing the research soon.

In the mean time, we hope you enjoy some of our ad campaign ideas...

 

Thursday
Oct272011

Hello World!

This is a test post for our blog!

Find news, videos, research, and other information here.

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