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Audiovox Acquires Most RCA Brands

Yesterday (Jan. 3), Audiovox completed its acquisition of Thomson’s Consumer Electronics Audio Video Business outside of Europe, including the worldwide rights to the RCA brand of consumer electronics, excluding television sets and “certain additional product categories.”

In all, Audiovox will be acquiring approximately $400 million in sales and expects to retain $150 million of that related to RCA-branded MP3 and MP4 players, digital cameras, camcorders and clock radios, Audiovox said. The company is entering into an agreement with Chinese manufacturer Multimedia Device Ltd to market the remaining product categories acquired from Thomson.

“Our goal with this acquisition was to further control and consolidate the RCA brand and prevent fractionalization at the retail level,” said Patrick Lavelle, president and CEO of Audiovox. “We believe this acquisition will add approximately $150 million in sales and a revenue stream with an up front $10 million payment. In addition, it will allow us to spread fixed overhead over a higher sales base.”

Lavelle said that Audiovox would establish a branch in Mexico, using the former Thomson facility there. This would give the company a presence in that growing Mexican market and allowing the company to expand its entire line.

Standalone ATSC terrestrial over-the-air digital-to-analog converters—those eligible for the government’s $40 subsidy—are included in the audio/video product categories being acquired.

Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. He has been with NBC since 1985 and is currently vice president of broadcast technology for NBC/Telemundo stations.