VSDA, IEMA form new unnamed group.

Trade groups representing video retailers and game merchants revealed Tuesday (April 11) they will merge to form a single trade association representing a broad spectrum of home entertainment retailers. The new group, as yet unnamed, will be formed through a bonding of the Video Software Dealers Assn. (VSDA) and the Interactive Entertainment Merchants Assn. (IEMA).

The merger brings together VSDA, which has 1,100 member companies, running some 12,000 stores, with the IEMA, which has 35 member companies that account for 75% of all video game sales.

The combined trade association will provide its members with knowledge-sharing forums, networking opportunities, legislative and legal advocacy, research services, and other trade association offerings.

The merger is good news for VSDA, which has been looking for a partner for awhile. Two years ago, VSDA and the National Assn. of Recording Merchandisers almost merged, but at the last second the NARM board called it off.

- Additional reporting by Ed Christman, N.Y.