Nevada retailer plans return to Reno
The Truckee Meadows will soon have another place to find that perfect bed. Not to mention home entertainment products.
And the seller is no stranger to area residents.
Longtime northern Nevada merchant Brad Bolotin, who took his business to Elko when the economy slowed down, said he will re-establish a bricks-and-mortar presence in Reno this summer after an absence of five years.
Now planning a mid-June opening in the Longley West Shopping Center, Bolotin said he’s ready to give the chain stores a run for their money by staking out a niche as an independent purveyor of AV equipment and mattresses.
Encore A/V Design has a goal to offer the best in commercial and home theater audio visual. Bolotin will also open a SleepCenter Mattress Gallery where customers can take advantage of the YouSleep mattress fitting technology
SleepSource is a flagship dealer for Simmons Beautyrest, carrying the full line of products. Encore A/V Design, owned by Brad Bolotin and partner Dr. Myron Gomez, provides commercial and home theater products, automation design and installation service.
“We view it as a grand homecoming. We’ll have a big celebration,” said Bolotin. The businesses will be opening side by side.
“Our stores are going to be well-merchandised and very clean,” he declared. “We always carry the latest products in mattresses as well as audio/visual products, such as home theater systems.”
“We’ll be doing business with everyone from the blue collar to the high-end,” said Bolotin, who has worked in sales for 50 years. “As in Elko, we’ll have a full-blown retail audio video store” in Reno, which will also feature surveillance products.
In business since 1978, Bolotin said coming back to Reno is a great opportunity “to reintroduce ourselves to previous clients and newcomers to the area.”
He said Reno’s stagnant housing starts and high unemployment during the economic downturn left him little choice but to find business opportunities in Elko, where he established a 2,500-square-foot showroom in 2011.
The decision to expand into Elko was an “easy decision,” Bolotin said, with the population being one of the largest in proximity to Reno.
“Elko wasn’t as competitive as far as buying a mattress goes,” Bolotin said. “And what we noticed is that people respond to how we do business.”
That successful local response is due to the team’s consultative approach to business, Bolotin said. Helping him was the fact that no other merchant was selling the Beautyrest line.
“I jumped on it like a heart attack,” said Bolotin about becoming a “flagship dealer” for the bed company, the No. 1 selling brand in the industry. He said he works with Brand Source, a large buying group for independent mattress sellers so he can price competitively.
The sales team in Elko asks a lot of questions to find out why the customer isn’t happy with their current mattress and what type of mattress would fit their body.
“No two people are alike, no two back problems are alike,” Bolotin said. “What we find is that it’s so unique to that individual that we have to be a good consultant.”
What helps is the pressure test system, a device that helps determine what type of mattress would best fit a customer’s body. Once that’s determined, the SleepSource sales associate matches the customers with one of their mattress styles with whatever price tag the they would prefer. Some of the brands also include Simmons, Serta and Tempurpedic.
“I’ve been commuting 800 miles a week,” said the energetic business owner, who began his career at the age of 14 at a furniture store owned by his grandparents in Chicago. His grandmother worked on the sales floor until she was 85 and imparted her business credo to Bolotin.
“She said a happy customer tells five people and an unhappy customer tells 50.”
He has lived in Elko five days a week but continued doing business in Reno two days a week with commercial clients by appointment only on the audio/visual side. “I just did a half-million-dollar AV project for the Boys and Girls Club across from Reno High School.
“Because of my 30-plus years experience, a lot of my Reno-area customers don’t need a showroom” for audio-visual-related products, said Bolotin, referring to builder clients, hotels and sports bars.
In terms of the mattress business, don’t just expect to walk in and find a sea of mattresses like you might see at a traditional chain mattress store. It’s not that kind of place, said Bolotin. “We’ll be very competitive in terms of selection and price.”
The company will do free delivery, set up the new mattress and taken away the old one. Bolotin said he will also offer a financing program that includes no down payment and no interest for 24 months on both mattress and A/V purchases.
“Reno has gone viral — (sales) activity has been phenomenal. When we fully expose properties to the market, we are getting like 15 offers,” Ken Blomsterberg, senior managing director of investments with Marcus & Millichap, told the NNBW recently.