AKG, Harman Kardon, and JBL are some of the most renowned brand in audio industry but do you know that all of them are under the same company called Harman International Industries? Soon, these brands and many more will be owned by Samsung as the Korean company will be acquiring Harman through a USD 8 billion (about RM 34.7 billion) deal.
Judging from the joint announcement by both companies, it seems that Harman’s consumer and professional audio market is not the reason why Samsung decided to acquire the company though. Instead, it is Harman’s leadership in connected vehicle solutions is likely the main reason behind the acquisition as connected automotive technologies has recently become one of Samsung’s recent priority especially with the establishment of its Automotive Electronics Business Team late last year.
In the announcement, it was mentioned that Samsung’s Automotive Electronics Business Team and Harman will work together to pursuit opportunities within the automotive sector. Despite that, the Korean company has planned to retain Harman’s existing assets including its work force, headquarters, facilities, and brands once Harman become a stand-alone subsidiary under Samsung when the acquisition is completed in mid-2017.
With that, it is still too early to say on how the acquisition will affect Harman’s existing product in the market. Nevertheless, we believe that audio products from AKG, Harman Kardon, JBL and other consumer as well as professional products under Harman will continue to be in the market for the next few years at the very least.