i3 - November/December 2016 - 44

David B. Lorsch
Founder and CEO, DBL Distributing

David Lorsch wanted to change how retailers bought and sold accessories.

H

is goal was
to provide
profitable
high-margin
audio and video accessories
to independent retailers
without penalizing them for
buying from a distributor.
DBL Distributing changed the
perception of accessories
from a poor stepchild of
the consumer electronics
industry into a retailer's
primary profit center.
Lorsch was raised to be a
salesman and entrepreneur.
Born August 24, 1959, in
Chicago, his father, Henry
and grandfather Curt
were also entrepreneurs.
Fascinated by stereos and
electronics, Lorsch worked
in stereo stores throughout
high school while earning
a B.S. in business
administration from Arizona
State University.
After graduation, Lorsch
moved to Los Angeles and
worked as a manufacturer's
rep for the Markman
Company. Representing
lines such as Infinity, Onkyo,
Sony and Teac, Lorsch was
promoted to sales manager
at the age of 24. In 1985, he
left his job to travel around
the world to decide what he
wanted to do with the rest of
his life.
Over the next three years,
Lorsch started - and closed
- his own company, and
worked as national sales
44

NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2016

manager for two consumer
electronics manufacturers.
During this time, while
on vacation in Club Med,
Lorsch met Montreal native
(and future wife) Cindy
Lubin. After nine months of
long distance dating and a
five-month break-up, Lorsch
flew to Montreal and asked
Cindy to marry him.
Lorsch identified
an opportunity to sell
accessories to independent
retailers in the western
United States; especially
considering that the closest
competitors were in St.
Louis and Oklahoma City. In
June 1989, DBL Distributing
was founded on an initial
investment of $35,000,
mostly from proceeds of
their wedding.
Relocating from Los
Angeles and Montreal to
Phoenix, the couple hoped
DBL would quickly become

a big fish in a small pond.
During DBL's early years,
Lorsch had to continually
change banks to get
additional credit lines.
DBL kept costs low
by selling via a catalog.
The first DBL catalog
was 12 pages, featuring
400 products from 15
manufacturers, and was
mailed in September
1989 to 6,000 retailers
in the 13 western states.
Lorsch made sure each
customer got the lowest
price, regardless of volume.
DBL Distributing's tag
line quickly became "The
Accessory Specialists."
The first DBL order
came in September 1989,
from Clovis, NM. By the
end of 1989, DBL had 150
customers. But within six
months, the company had
run out of cash, and each
asked their respective

parents for $5,000 loans.
Cindy's father sent the money
overnight without question.
Lorsch's father asked "Are you
throwing good money after
bad?" His reply, "No, I just
need some time."
DBL grew quickly. The
company started in a
1,500-square-foot space
and advanced through six
buildings before migrating
to its final Scottsdale, AZ,
headquarters of 144,000
square feet. DBL's sales
growth beat sales against
the same month of the prior
year every month except
two in its 18-year history.
Starting with just Lorsch,
Cindy, and their Dalmatian
Sam, DBL grew to more
than 400 employees.
When DBL was sold to
Ingram Micro in June 2007,
they had more than 26,000
customers, and a 1,200-page
catalog filled with 18,500
products from more than
400 manufacturers. The
DBL catalog had become
a reference guide for the
entire consumer electronics
industry. Lorsch attributes
DBL's success to a simple
philosophy: "good price, good
product, good service and
take care of the problems."
Lorsch and his wife,
Cindy, are retired. They
have two children, Scott
and Hillary, and are active
in Phoenix-area charities. n

I T I S I N N O VAT I O N



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of i3 - November/December 2016

Contents
i3 - November/December 2016 - Cover1
i3 - November/December 2016 - Cover2
i3 - November/December 2016 - Contents
i3 - November/December 2016 - 2
i3 - November/December 2016 - 3
i3 - November/December 2016 - 4
i3 - November/December 2016 - 5
i3 - November/December 2016 - 6
i3 - November/December 2016 - 7
i3 - November/December 2016 - 8
i3 - November/December 2016 - 9
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i3 - November/December 2016 - 11
i3 - November/December 2016 - 12
i3 - November/December 2016 - 13
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i3 - November/December 2016 - 15
i3 - November/December 2016 - 16
i3 - November/December 2016 - 17
i3 - November/December 2016 - 18
i3 - November/December 2016 - 19
i3 - November/December 2016 - 20
i3 - November/December 2016 - 21
i3 - November/December 2016 - 22
i3 - November/December 2016 - 23
i3 - November/December 2016 - 24
i3 - November/December 2016 - 25
i3 - November/December 2016 - 26
i3 - November/December 2016 - 27
i3 - November/December 2016 - 28
i3 - November/December 2016 - 29
i3 - November/December 2016 - 30
i3 - November/December 2016 - 31
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i3 - November/December 2016 - 33
i3 - November/December 2016 - 34
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i3 - November/December 2016 - 68
i3 - November/December 2016 - Cover3
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