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Beyond Automotive: Samsung Snags JBL & Harman Kardon in US$ 8B Acquisition of Harman Industries

by Cliff Raskind | 11月 15, 2016

In-vehicle infotainment, telematics and sound systems were clearly the driving force behind Samsung's US$8 billion acquisition of Harman International Industries today. However, other Harman properties (namely JBL and Harman Kardon) are also highly complementary prizes for the Korean giant.  While Harman will retain it's autonomy and continue operating with standalone brands for the foreseeable future, Samsung is undoubtedly eyeing Harman's stereo headset assets for innovation and better competitive positioning on several key fronts.

Think premium audio vs. Apple Beats in the near term, and bundled (or up-sellable) bluetooth stereo headsets in the medium term, as audio jacks go the way of the dodo bird thanks to Apple's quest for smartphone thinness and the rise of USB-C more broadly.

Samsung also gets a bonus in the fitness arena for scooping up Harman. Co-branded Under Armour / JBL stereo headsets have been well received in the fitness market, and with the UA Headphones Wireless Heart Rate Samsung gets another entry vector into in-ear biometrics beyond their Samsung Gear Icon-X earbuds. The icing on the cake may well be that Samsung's long-speculated strategic tie up with Under Armour is much closer to becoming a reality as Apple rekindles it's romance with Nike in the Apple Watch Series 2 Nike+.

UA Headphones Wireless Heart Rate

WDE subscribers may view the following report for more:

Samsung's Harman Takeover is Not Just About Cars

Additional Related Forecasts:

Global USB-C Handset Sales Forecast: 2014 to 2022

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MOBILE ACCESSORIES: Global Bluetooth Headset Revenue, ASP & Price-Tier Forecasts: 2001-2022

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