Mitek Profiting on Self-Propelled Growth
"Mitek is a tiny little player in the land of the giants, and the giants are getting more giant," says CEO Loyd Ivey of the company he founded in 1971.
Mitek Corp. started as a home audio company with two brands: MTX and American Acoustics Labs. The company has expanded without outside funding beyond the occasional bank loan, soon retired. After a flurry of acquisitions that began in the mid-1990s and ended in 2001, Mitek's mobile, home and professional brand holdings now also include DCM Loudspeakers, Musica, Atlas Sound, Xtant, Coustic and Streetwires. Each Mitek brand serves a distinct target trade market, but the company uses strategic co-branding and technology cross-pollination, placing Xtant's thermal management system inside an MTX Thunder amplifier, for example.
Mitek sells to about 1,000 dealers and some distributors in the U.S. It operates a European subsidiary, Paris-based Mitek Europe, and sells product into 121 countries.
Mitek brands use the same management for back office functions (human resources, financial and legal), but have different brand management for sales, marketing and distribution.
Mitek manufacturing occurs in facilities around the globe, but Ivey is proud that much of it is done in the U.S. Mitek's commercial sound product is made in Ennis, Texas; its electronic amplification in Phoenix; and its woodworking, rotational molds and plastic in Monroe, Wis. Mitek facilities in China, each jointly owned with a partner, are held to the same ISO quality standards as Mitek's U.S. plants, Ivey says.
Mitek is looking to convergence and to the housing boom for its future growth. Its home audio sales are up significantly this year, Ivey says. "I feel we've got growth opportunities in every category that we're in, and a lot of growth opportunities in categories that we're not in today."
Mitek has invested in new networking technology—A-BUS for MTX, Klotz Digital Varizone for Atlas Sound. Ivey says the goal is to provide "simple, elegant solutions for complex problems that [end users] have day to day."