Thiel Audio Acquired by Nashville-based Private Equity Firm
We received the following press release last night. No more information was available and there was no word when this story was first posted on whether or not Thiel cofounder Kathy Gornik will remain with the company. Since then, however, CEPro.com has reported that Kathy and her daughter Dawn Cloyd, who was director of international sales, will both leave Thiel. Why the sale? Our suspicion is that while Thiel remains a great brand, it is too small a company, with no access to a significant source of capital, to be able to compete effectively in today's market.
Press Release: Thiel Audio, winner of over 60 prestigious awards for loudspeaker design and performance since 1978, has announced that the company has been acquired by a private equity firm based in Nashville, TN. New Thiel CEO Bill Thomas has indicated that the brand focus will continue to be on premium quality phase and time coherent loudspeakers, with long time Thiel employees Brad Paulsen, Gary Dayton, Lana Ruth and Rob Gillum all remaining onboard.
"We identified Thiel as a brand with an unmatched heritage in performance audio and it is our intent to invest in the company's infrastructure, strengthening the engineering department first and foremost," stated Thomas. Thiel has just launched the CS2.7 and the CS1.7 is in the final stages of development, rounding out the CS series with the award-winning CS3.7. "We can improve efficiencies here at Thiel in the product development and manufacturing stages, shortening the time to delivery for new products with zero compromise in product quality," added Thomas.
New product categories will also be explored for Thiel; with an expansion of the architectural series an immediate priority serving to further establish the brand as a leading supplier of premium distributed audio solutions. "We will invest considerable time and energy speaking to our distribution channels worldwide, gathering data about the marketplace from those who know it best before making any decisions about new product direction," Thomas stated. Resources will also be allocated to improving the company's website and other marketing initiatives.
In addition to Paulsen, Dayton, Ruth and Gillum remaining with Thiel, the entire factory team has been retained and the existing sales channelcomprised of reps and dealerswill remain in place. The R&D and manufacturing facility in Lexington, KY will continue to operate at full capacity as wellthere are no plans to close Thiel's renowned Lexington, KY operation . . .
Thiel Audio Products Company of Lexington, Kentucky is a privately-held, engineering driven organization that performs research, design, and manufacturing of loudspeakers for the highest quality music and video sound reproduction in the home. The beauty of Thiel loudspeakers can be traced back to design concepts born from powerfully innovative thinking. For over 30 years, Thiel has woven a nearly magical synergy between engineering brilliance and an unfailing passion to create the most lifelike reproduction of recorded music. Along this quest for sonic perfection, Thiel’s customers, music aficionados, and audio press from around the world have lauded Thiel’s loudspeaker designs as some of the best ever conceived. Thiel manufactures ten individual products ranging in price from $1090 each to $14,700 per pair.