Trend Radar: November 2008

Name Of The Game: When Atlanta’s JVC America Inc. an-nounced earlier this year it would be adding 540,000 square feet to its existing 360,000 square feet of warehouse space, the move was further tribute to Georgia’s solid reputation as logistics nerve center for the entire Southeast.

The expansion is notable growth for a company that just a decade ago needed only a 70,000-square-foot facility in Kennesaw. But the huge jump in JVC’s warehouse space carried equal significance for a growing sector of the state’s economy: the gaming industry. JVC manufactures and distributes the discs that hold prerecorded optical media, industry jargon for the CDs that deliver our music, movies and video games – the latter being the stars of the entertainment genre.

“Even though the economy has been difficult over the past year, the video game industry continues to grow significantly,” says Ron Vangrov, chief operating officer for JVC.

One factor in the growth of games’ popularity is expansion of the customer base to include older men and women. “One of the genres in particular that has exploded over the past couple of years has been the games that are physically interactive,” Vangrov says. And more interactive games are being packaged with the required accoutrement, necessitating additional warehouse space. “We recognized a major expansion was going to be necessary to accommodate these products,” he says.

Georgia’s transportation network was another growth factor. “We’ve been able to reach about 78 percent of our customer base in three or less days via ground from Atlanta,” Vangrov says. “Plus, the port of Savannah gives us an alternative to bringing [Asian] product in from the West Coast. And when we need to expedite, there’s the Atlanta airport.”

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