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Former type Electronics & Appliance retailer
Fate Bankrupt
Founded 1950s
Defunct May 1996
Headquarters Detroit, Michigan
Key people Oliver Fretter, founder

Fretter was an electronics and major appliance retailer based out of Detroit, Michigan, with locations nationally, founded during the 1950s, by Oliver Fretter. In 1992, Fretter acquired their biggest competition of the time Silo Electronics, a company that had previously not turned a profit since the 1980s. This was an attempt by Fretter to compete with its new major competition, electronic superstores Circuit City and Best Buy, which were much larger stores than Fretter. This move would lead the company into serious debt and Chapter 11 bankruptcy, forcing the chain to close many locations by 1993. All Silo Electronics stores were closed by 1995, with all Fretter locations closing by May 1996.[1][2][3][4]

The company's founder and spokesman, Ollie Fretter, became known in the Detroit area in the 1970s and 1980s by humorous TV commercials in which he promised, "I’ll give you five pounds of coffee if I can't beat your best deal. The competition knows me. You should too!" (When occasionally he had to make good on the whimsical offer, Fretter gave away five-pound cans of Maxwell House; later he dispensed the cans wrapped in paper labels that read "Fretter House Coffee.") Fretter's first store was located on Telegraph Road just north of Interstate 96 in the city of Redford, Michigan, and the main warehouse, warehouse store and company headquarters, was on Schoolcraft Road (I-96 service drive) in Livonia.


  1. ^ Lisa Holton (December 17, 1991). "Not always better to shop at Fretter's: Ward's suit". Chicago Sun-Times. "Montgomery Ward slapped Fretter Inc. with a federal lawsuit Monday, alleging that the Detroit-based electronics superstore made false claims in a recent TV ad saying Fretter's prices were better than Ward's." 
  2. ^ Jerry Ackerman (November 10, 1995). "Fretter closes all NE stores, retail promises to honor warranties, refund deposits". The Boston Globe. "With its brand appeal apparently waning and new competition on the horizon, Fretter Superstores yesterday quit New England, closing its 15 electronics outlets in Massachusetts and New Hampshire and directing queries to a toll-free 800 number. Although doors were locked and telephones went unanswered at local stores, Fretter Inc., based in Livonia, Michigan, told state officials that consumers have made deposits on merchandise or have warranty claims would be protected." 
  3. ^ Matt Roush (December 2, 1996). "How Fretter fell.". Crain's Detroit Business. "'Whole bunch of things' led to demise of appliance icon. Don't feel sorry for Ollie. It is true that the collapse of Fretter Inc. cost founder Oliver Fretter millions of dollars in paper profits, as he watched his remaining 3.5 million-share, 33 percent stake in the company decline to virtual worthlessness. But between the company's 1986 initial public offering and its 1993 combination with the Silo chain, owned by British electronics giant Dixons plc, Ollie Fretter already had cashed out of the company twice, putting about $35 million in his pockets." 
  4. ^ "Home Electronics, Appliance Chain Fretter Inc. Considers Bankruptcy". AP News, September 27, 1995.

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fretter — Please support Wikipedia.
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57 news items

Retail Week
Wed, 23 Apr 2014 04:48:45 -0700

However the recession hit and Dixons sold off the loss-making business to competitor Fretter Inc. WH Smith. WH Smith operated stores in the States from 1985 until 2003, mainly in airports. However its US arm was impacted after the 9/11 terrorist ...
Mountain News
Thu, 10 Apr 2014 00:02:25 -0700

With blue skies overhead and a warn spring day to enjoy, avid trout angler Phil Fretter of San Bernardino tested Lake Gregory's waters Monday in preparation for Saturday's Lake Gregory Fishing Derby, where the top prize will be a tagged trout worth $1,000.


Thu, 17 Apr 2014 21:52:30 -0700

Performers will include Book of Jebb, Jammin' Biscuits, Barry Jones, Thor Bonner, Knocknasheega, the DeVeils (formerly known as Raging Sea), Emily Strom Trio, Delores and the Pickin'-Fretter, and the Ne'erdowells. Food will be for sale from vendors ...
Indianapolis Star
Thu, 03 Apr 2014 14:42:18 -0700

... of customers, built their business on competitive pricing and on customer service and other services that were the epitome of an industry that at one time had other local competitors such as Sears, Highland, Fretter and eventually Best Buy and ...
Tue, 22 Apr 2014 17:11:15 -0700

Mittwoch, 23.04.2014 VermischtesFrettermerken. Fretter. Der SV Fretter veranstaltet im Rahmen seines alljährlichen Pfingstsportfestes am Samstag, 7. Juni, die 14. Ausgabe des „Tittenbergpokals“ für Hobby- und Thekenmannschaften. Teilnehmen an dieser ...


Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:36:49 -0700

SV Fretter - SV Rahrbachtal 4:3 (1:2). Der SV Rahrbachtal hat im Kampf um die Aufstiegsplätze an Boden verloren. Beim Gastspiel in Fretter verlor die Elf von Franz Vetter nach einer 3:2-Führung, noch am Ende mit 3:4. Der große Matchwinner dieses Abends ...
Sat, 19 Apr 2014 17:00:00 -0700

August. Der Hesborner Kuckuckslauf am 7. September und der Herbstwaldlauf in Fretter am 27. September schließen die Serie ab. Der Ski-Club Fretter richtet dieses Jahr bereits seinen 50. Jubiläums-Herbstwaldlauf aus. Mindestens fünf Läufe der Serie sind ...
Fri, 18 Apr 2014 05:20:04 -0700

Grandi lavori in casa Klagenfurt, dove sono partiti gli austriaci Markus Pirmann, Paul Schellander, Florian Iberer e i canadesi Tyler Scofield, Tyler Spurgeon e Colton Fretter. John Lammers si trasferisce invece al Villach. In arrivo, oltre a Strömberg ...

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