30 Minutes with Kevin Bolton, NavWorld.
Kevin, you were formerly the owner of Bolton’s GPS Warehouse. What happened to that company? And how did you end up at NavWorld?
NavWorld was created when Darryl Curtis (owner of Bandit GPS) and I (then the owner of Bolton’s GPS Warehouse) decided to collaborate. As the two largest independent Garmin dealers in the country, it made sense for us to join forces and take our respective businesses to the next level. As a result, NavWorld is now Garmin’s walk-in client service provider and the largest independent Garmin retailer in SA.
What’s your formula for success?
Passion. Our sales and support team “live” the product! They’re a highly trained, motivated and skilled squad that regularly tests and uses a wide range of GPS products on a daily basis – an integral factor in our ability to provide excellent customer service. Pairing the correct device to the desired application is key. Which is why it’s imperative that clients tell us exactly what their GPS needs are before they buy. Of course, for many people, budget plays an important part, too, and because our staff are clued up on what products are available, we can provide clients with a list of GPS units that promise the best bang for their buck!
So which is the most popular brand of GPS?
According to our sales figures, it varies from month to month. However, it’s fair to say that Garmin holds 50 to 60% of the PND (Personal Navigation Device) market which focuses on street navigation. TomTom claims the rest.
What about the off-road / outdoor market? Is there a preferred brand for this sector?
Garmin dominates the lifestyle market exclusively, which includes off-road enthusiasts, hikers, hunters, and just about anyone who enjoys the great outdoors. Part of the reason for this is that TomTom doesn’t offer a purpose-made outdoor unit.
What about cell phones? Are they not rendering GPS units obsolete?
In some ways, cell phones are fulfilling a need in the PND market as a dedicated street navigator; however, this is by no means the case amongst the off-road fraternity or outdoor enthusiasts. For starters, it’s a matter of build quality, robustness, signal availability and overall versatility. Simply put, as things now stand, a cell phone’s limited application cannot compete with a dedicated GPS.