New York, NY (March 12, 2021)—In an unexpected turn of events, music software developer iZotope has teamed up with music tech manufacturer Native Instruments to operate together under a newly formed parent entity, Music Creation Group. The new entity will be funded by private equity firms Francisco Partners and EMH Partners.
The move comes less than two months after Francisco Partners entered the music creation space with a splash in late January. At the time, Francisco acquired a majority stake in Native Instruments from both EHM Partners and NI’s founding shareholders. EMH Partners has been a key part of Native Instruments’ world since October, 2017, when it initially invested €50 million into the company, and then later acquired a majority ownership last year. When Francisco Partners acquired its Native Instruments majority stake in January, 2021, both EMH and the founding shareholders retained minority stakes from that deal.
“As we have gotten to know each company and their teams, we are convinced that they will transform and expand the industry by working together,” noted Matt Spetzler, co-head Europe and Partner at Francisco Partners. Mario Razzini, principal at Francisco Partners, added, “Our role is to champion their shared mission, providing strategic business support and resources to enable their success.”
Guiding the new Music Creation Group, Mark Ethier, co-founder and CEO of iZotope, and Constantin Koehncke, CEO of Native Instruments, will collaborate as co-presidents of the Group. Under the new arrangement, Native Instruments and iZotope will each continue to operate independently. Going forward, both companies will continue with the same current leadership and internal teams, with no changes immanent.
Founded in Berlin in 1996, Native Instruments is primarily known for developing music software and hardware for music production, sound design, performance, and DJing, centered around platforms like Kontakt, Reaktor, Komplete and Sounds.com.
Cambridge, MA-based iZotope, founded in 2001, primarily builds professional audio software for audio recording, mixing, broadcast, sound design and mastering. Perhaps best known for its RX audio repair plug-in suite and Ozone mastering software, the company has also made in-roads into hardware with its MI-facing recording unit, Spire Studio.
As Mark Ethier, iZotope co-founder and CEO, said in a statement, “iZotope and Native Instruments share the same mission to inspire and enable creativity. We both look to make it easier for engineers, producers and musicians to realize their creative vision.”
Constantin Koehncke, CEO of Native Instruments, added, “Joining forces with iZotope brings us yet another step closer to fulfilling our shared mission to empower producers of all levels with everything they need, from instruments and effects to a supportive and thriving community.”
iZotope • www.izotope.com
Native Instruments • www.native-instruments.com