Sennheiser and Sonova Holding AG with headquarters in Stäfa, Switzerland, have announced their future cooperation under the Sennheiser brand. A global provider of medical hearing solutions will fully take over Sennheiser’s consumer electronics business. The plan is to complete the transfer of the business to Sonova by the end of 2021.
Sennheiser announced in February 2021 that it planned to focus on its professional business divisions while seeking a partner for its CE arm.This takeover allows Sonova to add headphones and soundbars to its portfolio, which currently comprises hearing aids and cochlear implants. Sennheiser will now concentrate its resources on the Pro Audio, Business Communications, and Neumann business areas.
In these three business units, the company says it plans to continue to grow at an above-average rate under its power and to expand its already strong position in the global market. Sennheiser co-CEOs Daniel and Andreas Sennheiser spoke to Audio Media International, in regards to the division of the company’s professional. And consumer business units as well as what the restructure means for its customers and staff here. Both companies will work together under the Sennheiser brand in the future, although Sonova will take over the development and production areas of Sennheiser Consumer Electronics.
“We couldn’t have asked for a better partner than Sonova for our Consumer Electronics business,” said Daniel Sennheiser, co-CEO at Sennheiser. “Sonova is a strong, well-positioned company. Not only do we share a passion for unique audio experiences, but we also share very similar corporate values. This gives us an excellent foundation for a successful future together.”
Co-CEO Dr. Andreas Sennheiser said: “The combination of our strengths provides a very good starting point for future growth. We are convinced that Sonova will strengthen the Sennheiser Consumer Business in the long term and capture the major growth opportunities.” Both partners see great potential in particular in the market for speech-enhanced hear-ables and true wireless and audiophile headphones. As part of the partnership, a complete transfer of operations of the consumer business to Sonova is planned. Currently, a total of around 600 Sennheiser employees work in the CE division.
Arnd Kaldowski, CEO of Sonova, said: “I am very pleased that Sennheiser has chosen Sonova to further develop the well-renowned Consumer Division. We look forward to welcoming our new colleagues and to building on the combined strengths of both organizations to successfully shape our joint future. The fast-growing market for personal audio devices is rapidly evolving.Combining our audiological expertise with Sennheiser’s know-how in sound delivery, their great reputation, as well as their high-quality products, will allow us to expand our offering and to create important touchpoints with consumers earlier in their hearing journey. Combining our market-leading technology with the strong brand and well-established distribution network of Sennheiser creates a strong foundation for future growth.”
Commenting on the acquisition, analyst Luke Pearce of Futuresource Consulting, said: “A smart and logical move for both parties, with Hearing Aid brands needing to leverage the audio reputation of a well-recognized consumer brand, particularly among the target demographic, for the next generation of Smart OTC Hearing Aids and Hearables.”
Pearce further notes that Sennheiser too has been under pressure from the rapid rise of smartphone brands in the personal audio category. “The move will enable them to keep its reputable brand in this space whilst expanding its other business units in Pro Audio and Business Communications.”