In what amounts to a bid to not end up like Blockbuster, 1980s juggernaut RadioShack (RSH) is pushing to get gadgets and devices from startups into its stores.
The move — in partnership with Ireland-based PCH International — is aimed at bringing more consumers through its doors.
PCH helps newer companies and startups get their products to market.
The promotional idea is a significant move from RadioShack — in effect, it’s hoping this will help begin staving off declining sales at its stores.
RSH stock is down 41% year to date– and nearly 90% in the past five years.
The company reported a $400 million loss last year, as it faces tough online retail competition — all in an arena that it once dominated.
RadioShack is in the middle of restructuring its company and image — with innovation being a major theme.
“It’s long been our belief that innovation and collaboration go hand-in-hand. As we transform RadioShack, it’s important that we simplify and streamline the channels that encourage inventors and entrepreneurs to join us in the retail environment,” CEO Joe Magnacca said in a press release.
RadioShack will have dedicated store displays for these new products by Christmastime.
Ireland-based PCH, for its part, hopes the new RadioShack Labs will offer consumers a quick and more visible way to see new, innovative products.
“Every day we talk to startups and see new products, but the retail model, which demands large capital in the channel, doesn’t typically work for startups and this hurts innovation,” said Liam Casey, founder and chief executive officer of PCH.
RSH stock is up 0.6% in morning trading.