"The VSDA used to provide a forum for independent retailers to get together, and there were adult committees, but they don't exist any more," Stevenson told XBIZ. "I decided to form a way for independent retailers who do a lot of business in adult to communicate with each other. I'm the only rental store in Syracuse, N.Y., and there's no one else for me to talk to. The adult stores sell; they don't rent. The only way for me to get information was to form a group."
The group — which is currently called "Adult Peer Group" — is in constant contact by email and holds two meetings a year. The last meeting was in Chicago in April, and was attended by representatives of producers Hustler and Pink Visual; distributors General Video, Global Direct and IVD; and about 20 retailers.
"It was great to have a meeting where people represented product from the beginning to the end," Stevenson said. "We all learned a lot and are continuing to email each other."
The meeting included roundtable discussions of law; pricing for rental and sales, advertising and merchandising; presentations by the distributors and producers; and a tour of four Chicago adult retailers.
Stevenson welcomes the participation of professionals in the adult industry.
"We're looking for more retailers to join the group, and more studio people and wholesalers," Stevenson said. "It's helpful for us to be able to all discuss these issues that are important to all of us. This is an attempt to bridge that gap, and I think we did that successfully."
For more information, email Dave Stevenson at firstname.lastname@example.org.