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IHFRA & ayr1 Form Strategic Alliance

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The International Home Furnishings Representatives Association, the largest home furnishings representative association in the world, announced that it has formed a strategic alliance with ayr1, the largest provider of virtual stores in the world.

In light of all the changes in the retail landscape that have impacted independent retailers, IHFRA and ayr1 are teaming up to provide a virtual store program for retailers that will put retailers back on the map in their local markets.

This project, which is designed to reach thousands of retailers through IHFRA members, will be rolled out at the upcoming High Point Furniture Market.  Under the terms of the program, independent retailers can receive promotional pricing without a capital investment, and be part of ayr1’s network of independent stores, who today receive in excess of 660,000 visitors per month (Source: Quantcast).

This will provide independent retailers the ability to have a complete virtual store which is kept up to date by their participating manufacturers and reps.  Retailers can illustrate their complete depth to consumers shopping in their local market.

“ayr1 has been providing effective solutions to retailers since 1999, and we are excited at the opportunity this creates for our members and the stores they serve.  Over the past few years, we have all seen a diminishment within the independent retail channel that is essential to our membership.  This program is specifically designed to enhance the marketing efforts of the retailers we all depend upon.”  Kathy Parks, Executive Director of IHFRA.

“We see this alliance as an essential step in preserving the independent retail channel that is currently being decimated by the absence of local retailers being found online in their local markets.  Our proven system ensures that retailers are found online when consumers are searching.   We look forward to the exposure IHFRA members can provide to local retailers, and expanding our network beyond the thousands of retailers we currently serve.”

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