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EXCLUSIVE: Powermove Boss Hits Out At Industry Speculation

The CEO of Adelaide based Powermove Distribution, Crawford Giles has hit out at industry speculation that his Company is under pressure.

In an email to ChannelNews following our story last week he said that “no other senior staff” have left the Company following the exit of former General Manager Nigel Dent and Business Development Manager Dina Murphy.

ChannelNews has been able to confirm that National Accounts Manager John Mangos has also left the Company, he was responsible for the Companies relationship with Harvey Norman.

Giles also claims that both Dent and Murphy have been replaced however he has not named the replacement management, but he did claim that despite the loss of brands such as Klipsch the Powermove Group was still a viable business as they have a property holding business, retirement village and aged Care business to support the Powermove business.

He also said that the Company owns two factories in China where they develop and distribute an extensive range of electrical products to the electrical wholesale channel under the POWERMASTER, DATAMASTER and TELEMASTER brands through a Company called Access Communications which is 100% owned by the Powermove Group.

According to Qualifi and Klipsch sources their business in Australia has “doubled” following the appointment of Melbourne based Qualifi to distribute the products 12 months ago.

Powermove management claim that they recently signed a new contract for distribution of the Philips soundbar and headphone business despite two local distributors telling ChannelNews that in 2019 they will be distributing the Philips branded products.

According to TPV sources the Philips soundbar business is set to go to a Sydney based distributor who also has operations in Europe and Asia.

Currently Philips headphones are being discounted out globally due to the collapse of Gibson Brands who held the franchise for the brand globally and supplied Powermove. This has led to US distributors selling heavily discounted Philips product into the Australian market. These products are being sold online.

During the past two years Powermove claims to have grown another one of their brands Pioneer Audio, in Australia by 75% and 40% growth during the past two months.

Back in July 2018 Onkyo & Pioneer Corporation and Aqipa signed a deal to distribute the Pioneer and Onkyo brands in European markets.

Crawford Giles CEO Powermove

The Austrian Company who has an extensive distribution operation in Australia has told ChannelNews that they are currently talking to both Pioneer and Onkyo about distributing the brands in Australia. At this stage the Pioneer brand is still contracted to Powermove.

Giles said “We are achieving our internal budgets which has result in sustainable profitability. Whilst the departure of Nigel was disappointing, he was brought on to establish a TV business for us and bring and share his knowledge of that sector with our team, which he did successfully, and that segment is now running successfully under the stewardship of Shelden Walker, a shareholder in the Group”.

According to ChannelNews sources the Toshiba TV brand which was acquired by Hisense is set to change distributors in Australia. Executives at the Chinese manufacturer of the Japanese TV brand said that they would also like to get Skyworth branded TV on sale in Australia due in part to the “uncertainty” of the Toshiba brand they said.

Retailers that ChannelNews has spoken to said that due to the “proliferation” of known TV brands in Australia it would be hard to sell a Skyworth branded TV in Australia.

We have also been told that former Powermove executive Nigel Dent has held discussions with Skyworth and two distributors in Australia with a view to taking the brand away from Powermove.

Giles said, “Dina’s departure, whilst similarly disappointing, has allowed the restructure of our accessories business with her role back filled by an addition to our team”.

He said that in recent weeks the Company has added Motorola as one of the brands that they sell. What’s not known is whether the distribution deal includes Motorola phones and tablets.

Giles said that he was confident of the Companies future and that “he” developed the largest and most profitable and most integrated privately-owned Apple Reseller in the world from scratch at Next Byte before selling after the iPhone was announced but before it was released.

“I sold this business to the publicly listed Vita Group for $32m in 2007 and continue to exercise the management skills and expertise developed during that journey to build and grow the Powermove Group” he said.

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