Klipsch Audio Executing a Global Strategy
Given the retail consolidation in North America and a decline in some of the traditional loudspeaker business, Jacobs says, "we felt strongly that evolving more towards a technology-focused, end user-friendly product company was the direction we should go." VantagePoint also saw an audio market strategy "that could include a multi-branded approach to having good, diversified distribution around the world."
When Klipsch began its conversations with VantagePoint, about 15 percent of its business came from international markets. "Our target was about 50 percent," says Jacobs, adding that with the acquisition of Jamo and Klipsch's own growth, "we've achieved our target."
In the U.S., Klipsch distribution includes A/V specialty, custom installer, commercial contractor, professional cinema, mass merchant (Klipsch Synergy) and direct sales through klipsch.com. Klipsch, since September 2004, is exclusive global distributor for Oxmoor Corp.'s ZON Whole House Digital Audio products; ZON is available only in the Klipsch specialty retail and residential contracting channels.
Klipsch Audio Inc.'s near-term goals start "with being a multi-branded, global company with significant growth aspirations, even for this year," says Jacobs. "We're making sure we have the right people in the right positions, and the structure organizationally to support the growth." The company's current drive has "a lot to do with organization and the balance of distribution and products," he says.
Long term, Jacobs says Klipsch will expand its technology play. "We'll be watching where the markets are going, looking at the true technology leaders driving the trends, and develop the products, concepts, marketing and channels of distribution that plug us into leveraging these new technologies as they hit the marketplace."
Jacobs says the goal is "not to disturb the customer-facing portion" of its brands and to maintain separate sales, management and leadership for Jamo and Klipsch. The company rather seeks efficiencies in logistics, warehousing, financing/accounting and manufacturing.