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NHT ‘Turns Down the Lights’

Benicia, CA — Specialty loudspeaker manufacturer, NHT, has issued a statement saying that the company “is going quiet,” essentially terminating the brand in effort to explore an entirely new business strategy.

Signed by NHT heads Chris Byrne, John Johnsen and the entire NHT gang, the statement gives a nod to the difficult economy and outlines NHT plans to sell its remaining professional and consumer inventory through existing distributors and dealers over the course of the next 60 days. Byrne insists, however, that the company is not going bankrupt.

“One thing that is for sure is that this is not about our love for or commitment to the brand,” Byrne said in the statement. “It isn’t about the audio business, either. It’s all about the realities of the world and how consumer attitudes are changing, and how we as a brand and an industry can best respond to the need for real invention. We’re anxious to get moving. When we do, it will be in the right direction…”

Byrne stated that March 31, 2009, will likely be the last day of “regular” business for NHT, “at least for now.”

“We intend to offer customer service and repair services for both in and out of warranty, available ongoing,” Byrne said. “Keep an eye on our website ( for more details and the occasional update.”

Founded in 1986 by Byrne and Ken Kantor, NHT thrived despite five separate buyouts over the course of its history. Byrne, who’d left the company for a two-year period when it was under Recoton control (1997-2001), said in February 2008 that he and his co-leaders, Johnsen and Tom Pyle, intended to get its bearings before venturing back into the market this year under an employee-owned model.

Byrne closes the farewell letter, stating: “This isn’t good-bye, it’s just ‘see you on the other side.’ Thanks for everything!”