California Audio Labs acquired by Go-Video

On Monday, January 5th, Go-Video, Inc. announced that it has reached an agreement to acquire California Audio Labs LLC. Under the California Audio Labs and Cinevision brand names, Cal Audio designs, develops, manufactures, and distributes digital audio and video products marketed to the high-end home entertainment systems market.

The transaction, which will be accounted for under the purchase accounting method, is valued at $775,000 plus assumption of debt, and is expected to be completed on January 31, 1998. Under the terms of the agreement, Cal Audio will operate as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Go-Video.

Go-Video is a technology and marketing company that has attracted industry attention for its Dual-Deck VCR. The company also offers a variety of closed-circuit TV products for consumer and commercial applications.

"This deal was two years in the making," said Roger B. Hackett, Go-Video's chairman and CEO. "Cal Audio's highly regarded engineering skills, product line, and brand name have been attractive to us for some time. We believe that by bringing our organizations together, we will both reap tremendous benefits in design and engineering, product development, and marketing."

Cal Audio recently introduced a DVD player that combines audiophile audio performance with top-quality video playback. The California Audo Labs CL-20, one of the first DVD players manufactured in the US, incorporates the latest dual-focus laser technology to allow playback of DVD, Video CD, HDCD, and standard CD formats.

Cal Audio's product line also includes high-end CD players, digital decoders, preamplifiers, and amplifiers sold with the California Audio Labs nameplate, and home-theater video projectors sold under the Cinevision brand. Its low-cost Gamma D/A processor (manufactured in the Far East) and its multidisc CL-10 CD player have been well-reviewed in recent issues of Stereophile.

"We're convinced that this partnership will help Cal Audio grow their business with the addition of Go-Video's product development and marketing expertise," added Hackett. "At the same time, Cal Audio will play an integral role in new digital product development for Go-Video."

Hackett pointed out that Cal Audio's reputation as a producer of high-end digital audio and video products should create synergies between the two companies, especially in the wake of Go-Video's co-development and marketing agreement with Loewe Opta GmbH, a German manufacturer of high-end digital TVs.

"Cal Audio's products have received stellar reviews in top industry publications, including Stereophile, Home Theater, and Fi magazines," said Hackett. "In addition, Cal Audio's distribution channels for high-end audio products closely match Go-Video's target dealer profile for our digital television line."

Go-Video plans to begin marketing its digital TV line in North America during the second half of 1998.

Founded in 1986---its first product was a Philips-based CD player with a tube output stage---Cal Audio is managed by Dan Donnelly, president and chief engineer. The company has 14 employees, including a team of engineers and product designers.