Shaking hands on the deal are (l-r): Xavier Pion, InnovaSon; Gerard Malvot, InnovaSon; Philipp Lawo, Lawo.By Clive Young
New York (April 28, 2008)–German broadcast console manufacturer Lawo has purchased a majority stake in InnovaSon, ending 10 months of receivership for the French digital live mixing desk company. Reaction in InnovaSon’s U.S. office was instantaneous: “We’re psyched,” said Kevin Madden, national sales manager.
Lawo is best known for creating high-end digital mixing consoles and routing systems for the broadcast industry, while InnovaSon made waves in the mid-Nineties when it became the first company to debut digital live mixing desks suitable for touring use. As the marketplace for live digital consoles expanded, InnovaSon has had to catch up to modern expectations for a digital desk, and it has, as indicated by the recent shipping of its Pro FX onboard effects package. Nevertheless, the opportunity to collaborate with Lawo is expected to spur advancements for both companies.
Kevin Madden, U.S. national sales manager, InnovaSon. “When people look at the Lawo website and see what the company’s offering, they realize that it is a very serious, competitive company,” said Madden. “This isn’t like a speaker manufacturer acquiring shareholding in InnovaSon; there are some major synergies that will get exploited. Lawo’s expertise and ours will combine to hopefully push us over the top in terms of uniqueness and what we can bring to the table as a digital mixing desk company.”
In a statement, Lawo CEO, Philipp Lawo, confirmed that view: “Our investment in InnovaSon adds a new dimension to our activities at Lawo. The opportunity to create new synergies will be to the benefit of both companies. InnovaSon is a strong brand in the live sound market, and we are looking forward to taking it to the next level.”
In the immediate future, however, the presence of Lawo means that InnovaSon in the U.S. will have more marketing support behind it, allowing it to raise awareness in the U.S. market of its current product line. “We’ll have more resources, more marketing, more exposure and trade show presence,” said Madden.
One thing the U.S. InnovaSon office won’t have, however, is an inventory of Lawo gear. “We will remain separate distribution organizations; their customers are very different than ours,” said Madden. “The US distribution organization will not really change.”
Xavier Pion, InnovaSon’s sales and marketing director in Brittany, France, remarked in a statement, “It’s no secret that we had been looking for a development partner for some time. We explored a number of possibilities, but none seemed to be quite the match we were looking for until Philipp Lawo expressed an interest. I am delighted to have concluded the agreement and look forward to a rich partnership.”