KEF Dumps Amber In Sound Industry Shake Up

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EXCLUSIVE: KEF a leading UK audio brand has dumped ASX listed Amber Technology as their distributor in favour of Audio Connections. The loss comes as the consumer electronics distributor’s revenues slump.

Earlier this month the Company resorted to running garage sales from their premises of a weekend in an effort to shift stock.

According to Josef Riediger the CEO of Audio Connections he was offered three Amber Technology brands recently but chose KEF because “It was the only brand worth taking” he said.

According to several sources it has become common knowledge that several Amber Technology brands are currently being touted around distributors, with several competing distributors telling ChannelNews that they are set to meet executives of Amber represented brands at CES in January.

The KEF brand which consists of high end speakers and award winning home theatre systems was inherited by Amber Technology when they acquired Audio Works from David Small.

According to Small who quit Amber two years ago to take on a role with the Variety Club of Australia, KEF, is a brand that should “do well in Australia”.

It’s a quality brand that I first distributed in 1992, when I was at Amber we sold a lot of KEF gear” said Small.

During the past decade KEF’s research group has being steadily developing considerable expertise in the in the use of advanced acoustical, magnetic and mechanical modelling techniques. This research and development is now starting to show with the release of products like the KHT9000 system incorporates activated carbon inside a loudspeaker enclosure, vastly increasing its effective internal volume while allowing enhanced bass extension from compact cabinets.

According to Riediger he is confident that he can re-establish the brand as “a leading sound offering” he said.

“This is an excellent brand that I believe we can grow in Australia” he added.

 

Amber Technology was not available to comment.

In recent months Amber has struggled to hit revenue targets with the current downturn set to impact the Company’s 2010 revenues.

Last month Amber reported a 7.6 percent decline in revenues and a profit slumped of 11.1% to $1.6 million at June 2011.

Speaking at their Annual General Meeting CEO Peter Amos said that profits this year could fall to as low as $1M he also said that Amber was now looking for growth from new Pro AV markets spanning video conferencing and digital signage.

 Amos told shareholders that 2010 was “A challenging year with a slow second half” he said that fewer capital projects had been completed by the Company and that the Company was seeing consolidation by suppliers and customers of Amber products in the marketplace.

It is not known what percentage of revenue the KEF brand generated in Australia for Amber.

Insiders are tipping that one of the brands that could be under threat is the Meridian brand which is another brand that came to Amber following their acquisition of Audio Works who took first on the Meridian brand in 1988.

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