Deal adds Verizon Wireless kiosks to all HHGregg stores

Locally based electronics and appliance retailer HHGregg Inc. has inked a strategic partnership with Marion-based The Cellular Connection to open Verizon Premium Wireless kiosks in all of its stores.

The Cellular Connection expects to add more than 500 jobs in 15 states as a result of the deal.

For its part, HHGregg anticipates foot traffic in its stores will increase. Jeff Pearson, the retailer's vice president of marketing, said his company hopes Verizon customers who stop by to visit a kiosk will stay to purchase other items, such as wireless-enabled computers.

“We see this as an opportunity to have more consumers in our stores more often and see what other products we offer,” he said.

HHGregg began exploring opportunities a year ago to add a wireless “store-within-a-store,” Pearson said. Verizon was “a natural choice,” he said, because “it’s probably at this point the most recognized wireless company in the industry.” Pearson declined to share any of the terms of the Cellular Connection deal.

The new kiosks will offer the same capacity as Verizon’s own stores, providing wireless smartphones, cell phones and accessories. Verizon customers can pay their bills, obtain service, upgrade or change their plans, or adjust account information at the kiosks, which will debut in some stores this month. By year’s end, the Cellular Connection kiosks should be open in all 157 HHGregg locations.

In a news release, HHGregg said its partnership with Cellular Connection will expand its product assortment, which already included over 100 digital televisions and more than 500 major appliances.

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