New York, NY — British manufacturer Meridian Audio has acquired U.S.-based media server manufacturer, Sooloos LLC. The closing, which took place last Friday, was for an undisclosed amount.
According to Meridian CEO Tim Ireland, “Meridian supplies the very finest audio and video installations. As the market evolves toward download and streaming content and more sophisticated forms of control, we have been seeking the right partner to widen our scope and enable us to further excite our customers. Combining Meridian and Sooloos takes both over many hurdles; the two companies share striking similarities in culture, product philosophy, pursuit of excellence and market approach.”
The admiration is entirely mutual. Peter Wellikoff, Sooloos COO and a three-decade veteran of high-end consumer electronics said, “We’ve successfully established Sooloos as the most technically advanced and sophisticated innovator in this still very young media-server and systems sphere. Now, under the Meridian corporate umbrella, we gain advantages in global market access, as well as a network of engineering and technology resources that are unequalled anywhere.”
Meridian’s culture of innovation and shaping new technologies dates to its inception in the early 1980s, when founders Bob Stuart and Allen Boothroyd launched the world’s first “audiophile CD player,” effectively creating, and then proving, the concept of high-end digital audio. Meridian has since led the way in audio with its unequalled compact disc and digital-loudspeaker designs, audio processing, reference projection systems and high-resolution multichannel audio. Numerous other world firsts include the first audiophile and videophile iPod docking solution, and integrated tabletop CD/DVD, AM/FM/DAB home entertainment sound systems of unprecedented performance.
Bob Stuart, Meridian’s Chairman and CTO is very enthusiastic about the Sooloos acquisition. “Our two companies have been following one another’s success for some time,” said Stuart. “We share very similar philosophies and passions for music and total design excellence. There’s also a powerful synergy between the skills and experience of our respective teams, which will enable us to build together outstanding and definitive high-end digital entertainment systems.”
“Sooloos was founded to give people an experience, to put the fun back into listening to music,” said Enno Vandermeer, Sooloos founder and CEO. “By joining the Meridian and Sooloos teams that experience grows exponentially. Now the most fun, interactive and social way to access your music, photos, and video is also the best-sounding and most visually stunning digital media system on the market.”
In the immediate future, Sooloos and Meridian operations will proceed with only modest changes. Sooloos will retain offices in New York City. The R&D teams are already working closely together. Sooloos founders Enno Vandermeer and Danny Dulai and other key executives including Peter Wellikoff are excited to remain with the company.
The Sooloos products will be distributed via Meridian’s unmatched global network of specialist distributors, dealers and custom integrators, fully retaining the Sooloos brand and identity. U.S. distribution will be coordinated by Meridian America Inc., in Atlanta, while export markets will be served by Meridian Audio from the U.K.
Looking ahead, as the teams work together, the company plans new products and system interoperability.
Sooloos will be exhibiting at CES 2009 with Meridian in the Venetian Hotel.