Update: Masimo has completed the Sound United acquisition on April 12, 2022.
Our original story from February 15, 2022 is available below.
The ink on our Marantz Model 40n story was barely dry today when we heard rumors about something big regarding Sound United. Consolidation in the consumer A/V industry is nothing new but this story has huge implications because so many premium high-end brands are involved. Sound United is being acquired by Masimo Corporation, a leading global medical technology company.
The consumer electronics division of Sennheiser, was also acquired recently by Sonova; another medical technology company involved in the hearing aid space.
Masimo is a global medical technology company that develops and manufactures innovative noninvasive patient monitoring technologies, medical devices, and a wide array of sensors.
The Irvine-based company is acquiring Sound United for $1.03 billion and plans on leveraging Sound United’s expertise in consumer electronics and global distribution to expand its own consumer products business.
Sound United operates consumer brands Bowers & Wilkins, Denon, Polk Audio, Marantz, Definitive Technology, Classé, and Boston Acoustics.
From the February 15, 2022 press release:
Sound United, LLC (“Sound United”), a leading innovator of premium, high-performance audio products for consumers around the world, today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by Masimo Corporation (Nasdaq: MASI) (“Masimo”). Masimo is a leading global medical technology company that develops, manufactures, and markets a variety of noninvasive monitoring technologies for hospital and home settings.
Sound United operates iconic consumer brands: Bowers & Wilkins, Denon, Polk Audio, Marantz, Definitive Technology, Classé, and Boston Acoustics.
The brands are linked by a commitment to the highest production standards and a focus on unparalleled audio quality and performance.
Sound United delivers significant competitive benefits through its platform advantages including global distribution across online, retail and custom installation channels; a cloud-connected home ecosystem; and state-of-the-art R&D function focused on creating the highest-quality consumer products with world-class industrial design.
“I have long been a fan (and proud owner) of Sound United’s iconic brands and am honored to steward them through the next generation of technological evolution,” Masimo Founder, Chair & CEO Joe Kiani commented. “Masimo shares Sound United’s commitment to providing innovative, best-in-class products and experiences, with a relentless focus on improving the consumer experience.”
A combined Masimo and Sound United will create stronger relationships with consumers and seamlessly deliver high-quality consumer products. The company will leverage Sound United’s expertise across consumer channels to accelerate distribution of Masimo’s expanding portfolio of consumer products. The resulting company will benefit from a world-class professional and consumer engineering function focused on products that make an impact on the lives of our consumers.
“We’re excited about this transaction and see significant potential in combining our expertise in consumer electronics and audio engineering with Masimo’s strengths in healthcare and monitoring,” said Kevin Duffy, CEO of Sound United. “With our track record of industry-first innovation, best-in-class products, and a global distribution network, we are the ideal partner for Masimo to transform the consumer healthcare experience. I look forward to working with the Masimo team to enrich the lives of consumers.”
The transaction is expected to close near the middle of 2022, subject to the receipt of regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.
Post-closing, Kevin Duffy will continue to lead Sound United, reporting directly to Masimo Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Joe Kiani.
April 12, 2022 – Press Release:
Masimo (NASDAQ: MASI) today announced that it has successfully completed the previously announced acquisition of Sound United, a leading consumer technology company and owner of multiple premium audio and home entertainment brands. Sound United will operate as a division of Masimo, under its existing leadership, from its headquarters in Carlsbad, California. Sound United operates iconic consumer brands including Bowers & Wilkins®, Denon®, Polk Audio®, Marantz®, Definitive Technology®, Classé®, and Boston Acoustics®. Sold worldwide, these brands are linked by a commitment to the highest production standards and a focus on unparalleled quality and performance.
Joe Kiani, Founder and CEO of Masimo, said, “We are thrilled to add Sound United’s premium technology, established consumer channels, and well-known brands to Masimo’s broad portfolio of hospital and home medical technology solutions. We believe Masimo’s expertise in advanced signal processing, biosensing, and photonics technologies combined with Sound United’s audio and home automation technologies will bring about natural and yet non-intuitive solutions to people around the globe in home and in hospitals. Masimo will leverage Sound United’s expertise across consumer channels to accelerate distribution of the combined company’s expanding portfolio of consumer-facing healthcare products. We welcome the incredibly talented and dedicated teams at Bowers & Wilkins, Denon, Marantz, Polk Audio, HEOS, Definitive Technology, Classé, and Boston Acoustics to Masimo.”
“While we continue to identify growth opportunities by leveraging the strengths and resources from both companies, we want to express our continued commitment to our loyal customers who rely on the Sound United brands to continue driving their businesses with best-in-class solutions and forward-thinking innovation,” said Kevin Duffy, CEO of Sound United. “With our track record of industry-first innovation, superior manufacturing, and a global distribution network, we are confident that Sound United is the ideal partner for Masimo as they transform and enrich the consumer healthcare experience.”
Financial guidance associated with the Sound United acquisition will be provided during Masimo’s first quarter earnings release on Tuesday, May 3, 2022.
February 16, 2022 at 4:28 am
Hmmmm…A change is coming…
I still want a new Marantz 40n. Maybe. Kinda. Sorta. Yeah, I do. It looks sweet. Please review one soon! Oh! And a review of the new Pro-Ject Automat A1 is also politely requested.
I have Sennheiser stuff too. And Denon.
My mother taught me that any one can change. What is needed is change for the better.
That is my hope for this change in owner ship.
February 16, 2022 at 2:22 pm
It’s an interesting move. Masimo is a big player in their category but I’m puzzled by it somewhat. We’ve seen this happen before in audio and it doesn’t always end well for all of the brands.
Bowers & Wilkins, Denon, Marantz, and Polk are the big brands here. Classe is small, DefTec is not huge, and it will be interesting to see if people are shifted around or if this gives Sound United more R&D money.
September 9, 2022 at 12:41 am
I have been a Marantz guy since the 70s. Can only hope that Marantz continues to raise the bar.