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Three Questions: Jeremy Smith, President and CEO, InMotion Entertainment Group

Editor’s Note: Over the past 19 years, InMotion Entertainment Group has built a thriving retail business in the United States with more than 120 locations in U.S. airports. InMotion’s expansion plans are moving into high gear. The company is diversifying its retail offerings and setting its sights on international locations. ARN’s Carol Ward spoke with Jeremy Smith, president and CEO of InMotion, about the company’s strategy for both domestic and international markets.

Ward: InMotion has built an expansive business within the U.S. by offering products that meet the needs of travelers. What’s next for InMotion?

Smith: Our focus will always be to grow the InMotion brand and reach. We see opportunities and gaps in the markets, and are actively expanding. We are currently expanding our portfolio of retail offerings to include luxury luggage retail. We have partnered with Briggs & Riley and are excited to open and operate our first Briggs & Riley store in Houston Intercontinental this spring. Going international has always been a part of our strategy, and we are actively exploring international opportunities. We believe we’ve built up a national, recognizable brand to the point where we can translate what we do in the U.S. abroad, and the traveling consumer will still appreciate the brand.

Ward: What’s the latest on your U.S. stores?

Smith: Even though we are now having a focus on international opportunities, we’re still going to remain very focused on the U.S. market. We’re 120 stores strong now. We’re in 42 airports, and we will still explore additional opportunities. In fact, for this calendar year (2018), right now we have 15 projects scheduled between new stores and remodeled stores. We’re still going to be very active in the U.S. market.

Ward: What is trending right now in terms of product offerings or customer experience within the stores?

Smith: We deal with first-class products and recognizable brand names that the consumer appreciates. I think that’s one of our differentiating factors — the products that we carry that others don’t. Another is our customer service. We spend a lot of time in training and retraining and more training, and it pays off. When you’re trying to sell a $300 pair of headphones to a customer, you’d better know what you’re talking about. The demands change as technology changes and the products change, but I think in terms of what the customer expects it’s the same: a knowledgeable sales associate that can speak intelligently about a product. Dealerscope just ranked us number 56 in its top 101 consumer electronics retailers. Also, this year we were named ARN’s retailer with the highest regard for customer service, for the fourth year in a row. Our people excel at customer service and that’s a differentiating factor that has led to our success in the U.S. market. We think it will lead to success abroad as well.