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CEA and CE Industry Mourn Passing of Retail Pioneer Vance Pflanz

Arlington, VA – March 31, 2014 – 
The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)® mourns the loss of consumer electronics (CE) retailing legend Vance Pflanz. Pflanz was the founder and president of Pflanz Electronics, a privately owned CE retailer in Sioux City, Iowa, which billed itself as “First in Technology.” Pflanz was known throughout the CE community for his industry leadership and his hands-on approach to product demos and consumer education.
“Our association has lost a true friend and leader in Vance Pflanz,” said CEA President and CEO Gary Shapiro. “Vance helped grow our association and create deeper ties between dealers and manufacturers by championing retailers’ participation in CEA. We owe him a strong debt of gratitude for his service, his leadership and his legacy of programs to help support independent retailers.”
Pflanz was a longtime volunteer leader at CEA, helping to oversee the merger of the Professional Audio Video Retailers Association (PARA), where he served on the board, with CEA in 2004. He helped found and served as chair of CEA’s Audio-Video Retailer Division from 2010 through 2011, and was a member of the Retail Leadership Team of CEA’s Retailer Council since its inception.
Pflanz was a strong advocate for independent retailers. By trying to “get footprints” in dealers’ stores, Pflanz was influential in the development of “CE Demo Days,” CEA’s successful national retail promotions. He also helped develop CEA’s Great Ideas Meetings and Workshops for retailers, as part of his strong support for, and belief in, the importance of continuing dealer education. 
Beyond his participation with CEA, Pflanz was a prominent fixture in industry organizations that champion the independent dealer. He was a past president of Brand Source’s HES (Home Entertainment Source) division, served on the HES board, and is a past HES Dealer of the Year. 
Under Pflanz’s direction, 55-year old Pflanz Electronics prided itself on introducing consumers to the latest technologies via hands-on demonstrations conducted in solutions-oriented lifestyle environments by knowledgeable sales associates. To help keep the company front and center as the area’s electronics expert, Pflanz produced five-minute weekly radio spots and an hour-long radio call-in show to spotlight new technologies. He was a recipient of Dealerscope Magazine’s 2013 Retail Excellence Awards and his company received a 2013 Power Marketer Award by Revenew for its best-practice marketing program.
Pflanz began his career in the CE industry repairing TVs and selling vacuum tubes to other hobbyists. He was renowned for being among the first in the industry to sell a new product or promote a new idea. He was an early adopter of HDTV and has been a vocal champion for Ultra HDTV.
Pflanz also had a reputation for community outreach. He worked with organizations including Albums for Alzheimer’s and Make-A-Wish Foundation, as well as a variety of community projects in the Sioux City area.
About the Consumer Technology Assocation

The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) is the technology trade association representing the $208 billion U.S. consumer electronics industry. More than 2,000 companies enjoy the benefits of CEA membership, including legislative advocacy, market research, technical training and education, industry promotion, standards development and the fostering of business and strategic relationships. CEA also owns and produces the International CES – The Global Stage for Innovation. All profits from CES are reinvested into CEA’s industry services. Find CEA online at, and through social media.