Dawsons B & O in Westbourne recognised by Bang & Olufsen worldwide – an innovative business ever evolving with the times
Dawsons / BANG & OLUFSEN on Poole Road in Westbourne has received the accolade of a ‘Bang & Olufsen Top 50 Store in the World’. Receiving the award Dawson’s MD Kevin Dawson advised, “We are delighted to achieve this recognition for the second consecutive year. It celebrates the fact that we are actually number No 3 in the UK, for sales, behind Harrods and the Bang & Olufsen Knightsbridge Store and in the top 50 stores worldwide, out of a total of 800. It’s a huge achievement for us and a recognition of the hard work that we have put in and our ability to keep up with ever changing consumer demands.”
The family run store, which is steeped in history, was established in 1927 by Kevin’s great grandfather George Dawson, with premises initially on Seamoor Road in Westbourne. He sold his first radio for just £6 and stocked items such as portable radios, mains radios, accumulators and offered a charging service. Cyril Dawson subsequently joined the company, joined by Kevin’s father Peter Dawson in 1957. Kevin joined the family firm in 1980 at the age of 17. Dawsons became a B & O dealer in 1964 and is the oldest UK dealer.
Kevin commented, “The BBC started transmitting radio from Marconi’s London studio, 2LO, in the Strand, on November 14, 1922. Our involvement in broadcast products dates right from the early years. As a business we have successfully evolved over the decades. We have always had to be extremely agile and adaptable in order to move with the times and changing tastes. We are proud to say that we are innovators in our time. We were the first in 1992, at the time of the Winter Olympics, to install a 2.5m satellite dish outside the shop and offered the first high definition broadcast on a wide screen TV. It was quite a pull at the time.
“In the late 1980’s we were ahead of our time when we recognized a new emerging market, which was the dedicated home cinema room. Home cinemas have been a leading growth market for us ever since. Technologies have obviously changed dramatically during this time. Our 1st room showcased a Dolby Prologic surround sound system, with just 4 channels. We have now progressed to speakers in the ceiling with Dolby Atmos, offering up to 32 channels of sound. The projector picture quality surpasses everyones’ expectations. It gives a real wow factor as it’s so immersive. We love how it pulls the viewer in and engages them.”
Continuing, Kevin advised, “As a high street business we have made sure that we are much more than just a showroom – we strive to offer shoppers an ‘experience’ in store. We want to be able to demonstrate how great sound can heighten a viewing experience and allow our customers to play with sound and engage with them. In my grandfather’s day, the TV’s would have been 405 lines, today’s technology offers up to 2160 lines (4K). People often think that surround sound is just for movies but we know the impact that it can make on the viewing of everyday TV dramas and streamed television. Remember Thin TV = Thin Sound.
“We are currently working on a new, big Home Cinema room which is being designed to showcase our latest products and further develop the experiential shopping experience. We look forward to reporting on this in the coming weeks. This will be a welcome addition to our brand-new Home Media room.”