Q: What is your new position, and what does it entail?
A: I joined Ashly at the beginning of the year as CEO. Basically, my focus is setting a path for growth, and building the team and infrastructure needed to execute that vision. There were a couple of key factors that convinced me this company had enormous potential. First, Ashly has a stellar reputation in the market for quality, reliability, service and support. Second, Ashly is owned by JAM Industries, so you also have the backing of one of the most powerful and progressive companies in the entire pro audio and MI industries.
Q: How has your background prepared you for your new role?
A: I believe all my experiences in this industry have put me in a great position to see the opportunities and challenges this company faces, and navigate the road to success. I had first-hand experience at Alesis, with a company that dominated the industry for a time and then failed. SaneWave gave me the unique opportunity to be inside the development processes of several of the best companies in our industry. At PreSonus, I had a very comparable situation to Ashly, of building a small company into an industry leader.
Q: What new marketing initiatives are we likely to see from the company?
A: We are very focused on enhancing and modernizing the brand, raising awareness and expanding our reach. For a company that was part of the explosion of live sound reinforcement in the early 1970s, and has maintained an active role in the industry through all the changes in applications, technology, venues, etcetera, Ashly has kept a relatively low profile. It’s a bit of a double-edged sword. On one hand, Ashly has a strong direct connection and relationship with its core group of dealers, integrators and distributors, but the broad market may be less aware of the exceptional products, technology and services. We have expanded our product scope to include digital mixers with the DigiMix 24, and this gives us the platform to also expand distribution and the reach of our brand.
Q: What are your short-and long-term goals?
A: In the short term, we will focus on brand awareness, and expanding the distribution channel to prepare for new directions. At the same time, we are very focused on expanding our product range, and bringing the next generation of Ashly products to market. We see many opportunities to utilize the latest networking and communication technologies to enhance the user experience for both our integrator partners, but also the end users of our products in corporate environments, schools, restaurants, bars and so on. We also see Ashly taking a more active role in the live sound reinforcement space , which is such a strong part of our DNA.
Q: What is the greatest challenge that you face?
A: Clearly, the biggest challenge is assembling the resources, and the time required to do all the things we see on our near-and midterm horizon. I tend to be a little impatient, but the cultural, structural and process changes must be rolled out systematically or you risk crippling the core strength that is the foundation of the growth strategy.