International Dance Supplies prepares for US debut


International Dance Supplies (IDS), a Newton Abbot, Devon-based
cataloguer catering to dance schools and instructors, is jeteing
across the Atlantic with the launch of a 16-page accessories
catalogue for the US market. It will mail 11,000 copies next
month as well as launch a Stateside website.

“The US dance market is enormous, and the potential is
huge,” says partner Anne Walker. Granted, a far number of
companies already exist to serve that market. But according to
Walker, most of them offer fairly expensive costumes rather than
accessories-tiaras, gloves, hats, and other items that can be
teamed with a standard leotard to create a much less costly
costume. “IDS is known for its accessories, and we are
launching to complement, rather than compete with, the existing
offer.”

In fact, IDS has no definitive plans to mail its full-range,
244-page catalogue in the States anytime soon. Its next step will
be to introduce a lower-price range of costumers, as “our
market research has shown us that there is a demand for a budget
costume range,” Walker says.

IDS choreographed its entry into the US market carefully. It
joined the trade organisation United Dance Merchants of
America-the first non-American company to do so, according to
Walker-and it consulted with UK Trade & Investment (UKTI), a
governmental business development organisation, for advice and
financial assistance. The company worked with Pelham, NY-based
consultant David Ballard to set up a Stateside call centre and
returns facility. Everything else, including fulfilment, will be
handled out of the UK. IDS is using FedEx for its US deliveries,
as it already works with the carrier in the UK.

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