Audioprof acquires majority stake in Community Professional6 October 2015
Audioprof Group International has acquired a majority share in US-based Community Professional Loudspeakers.
Community has global sales activities and a strong track record in large and medium-sized fixed install audio applications. It was founded in 1968 by Bruce Howze and became an innovator in the audio industry through revolutionary products like the world’s first dedicated mid-range compression driver, the M4, and the first lightweight fibreglass horns.
Community designs and manufactures high-performance indoor and outdoor loudspeakers, often for applications in extreme and challenging environments. Its products can be found in the major sports venues, auditoria, theme parks, worship facilities and convention centres, with recent installations including Commonwealth Stadium in Canada, Arena Lublin in Poland, St Paul Union Depot in Minnesota, USA and World Cup venues in Brazil.
Audioprof Group International currently owns a majority stake in Apart Audio, founded by Tom Gheysens in 1992, a fast-growing European loudspeaker and electronics manufacturer with a strong focus on small and medium commercial fixed install applications (food service and hospitality, retail, outdoor, sports and leisure, education, religion and corporate).
“We are very happy that we can offer our worldwide customers a complete range from indoor to outdoor and from small to large fixed install audio solutions with two very strong brands: Community and Apart Audio,” said Hans Swinnen, chairman of Audioprof Group International. “Both companies will be developed as standalone entities under the same umbrella respecting their market focus, customer base, culture and heritage. They will enjoy ‘best practice sharing’ from both sides. With a strong base in Europe and the USA we will strengthen our worldwide position in installed sound.
“We are very pleased that Bruce Howze stays on board as an important shareholder, president and R&D director and that Christine Howze will continue to help us grow the business. Leadership positions at Community will remain the same with Steve Johnson as CEO,” continued Swinnen.
Bruce Howze, founder of Community, said: “It has been a wonderful and enjoyable journey since the company’s beginning and I’m very glad to have found a shareholder and partner with the same entrepreneurial background and spirit that drives Community. The relationship with Audioprof ensures continuity of the Community brand for our employees and customers, and I’m confident that we are positioning the company with the right partner for continued growth in the future.”