22nd Annual Profile of the American Music Dealer (2012
MMR’s annual dealer count struggled to maintain the status quo showing a slight net loss of 46 units for a total of 8,038. While storefronts are one measure of industry health, overall revenue (according to our 50 Dealer/50 State Review and Forecast December 2011) per unit is on the upswing as well as a marked increase in internet sales for the music products category.
On a state-by-state count (including the District of Columbia), 29 states recorded a loss, 29 states had unit increases, and four remained even. The biggest losses were reported in New York State, Massachusetts, Virginia, Illinois, Oregon, and New Mexico. Largest increases were registered in California, Texas, Colorado, Iowa, and Nebraska. This is the second year in a row that California and Texas Recorded the largest number of new store increases.
As in past profiles, fretted instruments continue to constitute the largest segment of the dealer marketplace and the only category where more than fifty percent of the total dealerships carry the product. Every category, with the exception of keyboards, showed an increase in the number of products carried, indicating a slight broadening of the market. Keyboard stores show a decline of 396 units over the past two years, while 213 dealers have either added or opened stores stocking fretted instruments.
Within the total store count of 8,038, 2,054 are classified as “specialty operations.” This year showed a growth of 55 specialty units, reversing a trend of decline during the past few years and continuing to constitute slightly more than 20 percent of total retail outlets. Our criteria for specialty classification is a dealership carrying 80 percent or more of a single product category. Print music continues to have the lowest number of specialty operations and fretted instruments remains the largest.