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Harman to acquire lighting business Martin Professional

Harman is set to acquire Martin Professional A/S of Denmark, a provider of lighting solutions for the entertainment, architectural, and commercial sectors, for €110 million.

Harman, the global audio and technology group and parent of JBL, Soundcraft and AKG, has reached an agreement to acquire Martin Professional A/S of Denmark, a leading provider of lighting solutions for the entertainment, architectural, and commercial sectors, for €110 million. The deal is expected to be completed in early 2013.

The launch of the Soundcraft Si Performer earlier this year – the first audio console to feature DMX lighting control functionality – was arguably a clue that Harman was looking to expand into parallel entertainment sectors.

“Our intelligent lighting solutions for touring, events, theatre and installations are a natural and perfect complement to Harman’s pro audio business,” said Dinesh C. Paliwal, chairman, president and CEO of Harman. “Our customers expect increasingly advanced and integrated solutions and Harman’s rich portfolio of technologies will enable us to drive new business opportunities. We look forward to welcoming the talented employees and dynamic innovations of Martin Professional to the Harman organisation.

“This acquisition will be an excellent complement to our professional business serving all our global markets, including the fast-growing BRIC nations. With the acquisition of Martin Professional, our strategy to provide system solutions to our customers will be further enhanced as we will be able to offer a full audio and lighting electronics solution for the live stage and events as well as permanent avenues and installations.”

“We are excited at the prospect of a strong integrated solution incorporating Martin Professional’s products with Harman’s professional audio brands and technologies,” said Martin president Christian Engsted.

Founded in 1987 and headquartered in Aarhus, Denmark, Martin Professional employs 450 people across its operations and is a world leader in the creation of dynamic lighting solutions. Recent Martin lighting installations include concerts by Lady Gaga, Lenny Kravitz, and Linkin Park; special events such as the Olympics and Commonwealth Games; venues such as Wembley Arena in London; television productions such as the MTV Music Awards, as well as numerous cinema, retail and infrastructure facilities.

It was not known at press time what effect the acquisition would have on Harman’s regular product distribution channels across the globe.

Pictured (L-R): Christian Engsted (Martin); Blake Augsburger (Harman Pro Audio); Jens Bjerg Sørensen (Schouw & Co., Martin’s Danish holding company)