By Moe Lastfogel
Director of Sales and Marketing for The Retail Observer
As you can see from the cover of The Retail Observer, we are celebrating our 25th Anniversary. The first issue of our magazine was printed in 1990 but yet we tout “An Eye On The Industry Since 1970”. Here’s a little history as to why.
In 1970, Chuck Edmonds bought a franchise from a local TV/appliance newspaper which he named the Northern California Retailer. In a full newspaper format, this magazine went out to both local brown and white good dealers in the Northern California market. This “rag” as many lovingly referred to it, lasted until 1983 under his sole leadership.
In 1983, it was sold to a competitor by the name of Don Martin in Southern California who renamed it TAD (TV Appliance Dealer). The magazine’s reach grew, covering Southern California, Northern California, the Northwest and the Rocky Mountain/Southwest areas. Chuck stayed on under Don’s leadership.
In 1990, Don and his wife Kasnea (both NKBA Hall of Famers) sold the magazine and decided to start Kasmar Publications which he still runs today. Their kitchen, bath and specialty room publications can be downloaded online through the Apple app store. Chuck went on to restart were he left off and formed a new publication called Retail Observer. He, along with long time friend Lee Boucher, ran this new version of the magazine until 2007 and increased its outreach even further to 31 states and approximately 6,000 followers.
In 2007, it was purchased and given new life and was affectionately renamed The Retail Observer which is the magazine you are reading today. It now has over 21,000 subscribers, is being read in over 35 countries and is available in a print and digital version. Eliana and our team at The Retail Observer are very proud of the history that has been inherited and we look forward to continuing the legacy of this beloved “rag” in 2015 and for years to come.
By Eliana Barriga
Publisher and Managing Editor for The Retail Observer
Happy New Year! The beginning of the year is such a perfect time to get introduced to new technology, products and services. And what better way to do this than by attending CES, KBIS 2015 and IBS at Design &
Construction Week. In celebration of the new year and new things (and just because we love our partners), we made even more room in this issue for them to showcase their products. Smart appliances are finally making their way into the mainstream market and popping up on independent retailer’s showroom floors across the country. That’s why we are featuring Control4’s collaboration with Sub Zero/Wolf in the article, Eat. Control. Love.
Elly Valas reminds us not to forget our health this year in her article, Here’s to a Healthy 2015. Libby Wagner adds more words of wisdom in You Are Not An Island. After reading these articles, I started reflecting on my own work ethic and healthy habits and realized the two pretty much go hand in hand. When I purposely fit in family time, I feel lighter, happier and healthier. On the other hand, when I repeatedly decline invitations to parties, lunches or coffee with friends for the sake of the business, I feel tighter and those little aches and pains seem more noticeable and less manageable.
We are not meant to be islands. We have friends and families that support our lives at home. And at work we have employees and partnerships we can rely on. With that said, how many times have you found yourself up worrying about your business? Or found yourself short on time and watching your personal list of to-do’s grow longer by the day? Yes, we are strong, we are independent entrepreneurs—we are modern day superheroes! But even Batman and Superman wouldn’t last long without their sidekicks. You won’t either unless you let go and lean on the people in your lives. If you feel like you can’t, then maybe this year you should focus on bringing in new people that will enrich your life and your work.
Make it a great year,