Sound Hub er frontløber i ny bog om fremtidens vækst
Sound Hub Denmark spiller en central rolle i den første bog på dansk om bæredygtige corporate-startup miljøer. Bogen sætter fokus på, hvordan etablerede virksomheder kan blive en del af fremtidens vækst ved at samarbejde med nytænkende iværksættere og andre samarbejdspartnere
Hvad kan startups, som vi ikke kan? Det spørgsmål stilles i titlen på en ny bog, som skal inspirere etablerede virksomheder til at skabe vækst gennem partnerskaber med bæredygtige startups.
Innovative miljøer og partnerskaber omkring virksomheder er den nye superkraft, som kan accelerere den bæredygtige vækst – hvis de designes rigtigt. Sound Hub Denmark er en frontløber i forhold til, hvordan man kan lykkes med det.
Sådan siger Freja Ludvigsen, der er forfatter til bogen, ”Hvad kan startups, som vi ikke kan? En guide til bæredygtig vækst i partnerskaber”. Hun var fra 2015-2021 erhvervsudviklingschef i en af landets største erhvervskommuner, Gladsaxe Kommune, hvor hun havde ansvar for netop at skabe partnerskaber mellem store virksomheder som Alfa Laval, Novo Nordisk, Novozymes, ISS, Forenede Service m.fl. og mindre virksomheder samt startups. Her satte hun corporate-startup miljøer på dagsordenen. Men hun opdagede, at beslutningen om at åbne dørene for startups kan være svær for etablerede virksomheder.
Hvis den stabile virksomheds markedskendskab og ledelseskraft kombineres med den nystartede virksomheds agilitet og kreativitet kan der skabes en situation, hvor idé- og vidensdeling bidrager positivt til begge parters vækst. Bogen skal ses som en guide til beslutningstagere i etablerede virksomheder, der gerne vil øge deres innovationskraft gennem samarbejde med bæredygtige startups, men som er i tvivl om, hvordan de gør i praksis, og hvordan de styrer uden om dilemmaer og risici,
fortæller Freja Ludvigsen, der i dag driver virksomheden Partnerskaberen, hvor hun hjælper virksomheder, kommuner og organisationer med bæredygtig vækst, innovation og partnerskaber.
Stærk lokal case med international tiltrækningskraft
Sound Hub Denmark er med i bogen som case på, hvordan man skaber miljøer, hvor etablerede virksomheder og iværksættere kan teste og udvikle nye produkter sammen. Her fortæller Peter Petersen, CEO, og Rie Kold Pripsø, CCO, om hvad det har krævet at opbygge et verdensklasseudviklingsmiljø og lærende fællesskab for lyd og akustik i Bang & Olufsens historiske bygninger fra 1946.
Miljøet adskiller sig fra nogle af de andre miljøer i bogen, der er skabt i direkte tilknytning til en specifik virksomhed. Det er miljøer som NIRAS Green Tech Hub i Allerød og Alfa Laval Innovation House i Gladsaxe.
Sound Hub Denmark er en fantastisk case på, hvordan et stærkt partnerskab på tværs af virksomheder, universitet, kommune, fonde og erhvervsfremme kan skabe et corporate-startup miljø sammen, som danner et internationalt orienteret økosystem, der både gavner de etablerede virksomheder, tiltrækker nye virksomheder og bidrager til lokalsamfundets vækst,
siger Freja Ludvigsen.
Skaber det rette match
Freja Ludvigsen interviewer i bogen Peter Petersen og Rie Kold Pripsø og spørger til miljøet i Sound Hub Denmark.
Vi er formidlere, som sørger for, at der opstår det rette match mellem eksempelvis en virksomhed og startup, eller freelancer (konsulent) og startup, som gør, at det bliver succesfuldt for begge parter. Startup-virksomhedernes mindset er at beskæftige sig med det, der gavner dem mest muligt her og nu. De har hverken tid eller finansiering til at være tre måneder i en venteposition i forhold til en test eller afklaringsproces med en virksomhed,
fortæller Peter Petersen.
Hvis man vil skabe partnerskaber, der har fordele for begge parter, bør de mødes på den samme spilleplade. Vores rolle er at overkomme kulturforskellene og være mægler mellem de to parter, så de forstår hinanden,
uddyber Rie Kold Pripsø.
De stedbundne kvaliteter
Hvad er deres råd til andre, der gerne vil lave et miljø med mange partnerskaber og mange bundlinjer?
Vi hører flere sige, at vores styrke er den stedbundne kompetence og kvalitet. Vi har noget at have det i.
Det betyder noget i forhold til partnerskaberne og det engagement, der lægges for dagen. Ikke dermed sagt, man ikke kan bygge noget op fra bar mark, men vi har en fordel i områdets historie og DNA med en erhvervsudvikling funderet i design og god lyd i kombination,
Hvad får de store virksomheder ud af at være en del af miljøet?
Det betyder noget for de større virksomheder, at de har adgang til den nyeste viden, innovationshøjde og spændende startups via den talentmasse, vi tiltrækker. De har ikke selv ansvaret for udviklingsmiljøet i Sound Hub, men bidrager aktivt med mentorskab, sparring, ekspertise og indlæg til gavn for iværksætterne og andre, som gæster os. De kan lettere stemple ind og ud, da de ikke har deres eget navn på spil. De får samtidig en mulighed for en dialog med startups, hvor de kan afsøge, om der er et match.
Hvad er jeres største styrke?
Alle vore relationer bygger i høj grad på tillid. I udlandet starter du som oftest på nulpunktet og arbejder på at opbygge en tillidsrelation. I Danmark har vi som udgangspunkt 100% tillid, som man kan være uheldig at miste. Denne danske tilgang imponerer vores samarbejdsrelationer. Når startups konsulterer os, har vi grundlæggende tillid til dem, og tilbyder hjælp uden bagtanker om kapitalandele, opkøb eller andet. Det er en god kapitalform, og vores erfaring viser, at det giver et godt afkast i form af vækst, frugtbare samarbejder og innovative løsninger til samfundet,
Freja Ludvigsen: ”Hvad kan startups, som vi ikke kan? En guide til bæredygtig vækst i partnerskab”
Forlaget Rethink Business
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Gratis læseprøve findes på Partnerskaberen.dk
Being a part of Sound Hub is so much more
Being a part of Sound Hub is so much more than network and knowledge sharing – It is putting innovation on the top of the agenda.
One of the leading players in the wireless tech industry, RTX A/S today announces their membership and engagement in Sound Hub Denmark.
With more than 25 years of experience and know-how within the wireless industry RTX is one of the heavy players. This brings a lot of knowledge, which can benefit newcomers in the industry as well as ensure a constant lookout for where the industry is moving towards.
We have the ambition to create ground-breaking technologies while also creating value for our customers and end-users.
That’s why we are pleased to be a member of Sound Hub Denmark, as it on one side gives a lot of opportunities for direct and deeper insight into new application fields of sound, and on the other side a chance to share our knowledge to motivate start-ups in this hub – all to let the innovation thrive,
underlines Jens Christian Lindof, Vice President & CTO at RTX.
RTX has a market-leading position in wireless solutions. They design, develop, and manufacture wireless communication solutions within multiple industries. Professional audio solutions are one of their key areas, with research focus on continued improved performance like unsurpassed link stability and sound quality, while still maintaining low latency. A competence relevant for wireless microphones and headsets used for e.g. live events, studios, concerts and conferences, as well as gaming accessories such as keyboards, headsets, and mice.
As a member of Sound Hub, you get access to test facilities, advanced equipment, seminars as well as a ticket into this network of equally audio enthusiastic people – something that’s hard to find but gives so much value for both newbies and the experienced players,
continues Jens Christian Lindof.
With an innovative mindset RTX makes an effort to understand how the specific use cases can be optimized through wireless technology to make a difference and in the end help the user perform at their best.
Our experience shows that to really stimulate and nurture innovation; matchmaking with tech partners is often sought-after.
We are therefore pleased to also welcome RTX to our community and ecosystem. Understanding the importance of collaboration to speed up development should not be underestimated,
concludes Peter Petersen, CEO at Sound Hub Denmark.
RTX A/S is driven by digitalization and the demand for mobility and secure transmission. RTX has successfully finalized more than 1,000 wireless projects, ODM or OEM solutions in collaboration with global technology brands – from initial design, development, testing, and production. RTX operates through three main application areas: Enterprise solutions such as wireless systems including handsets, headsets, and base stations. Professional audio, including wireless microphones and other solutions for concerts and conferences, as well as gaming accessories such as keyboards, headsets, and mice as well as healthcare solutions where wireless systems are used for monitoring critically ill patients, among others. RTX makes an effort to understand how specific scenarios can be optimized through wireless technology to help the user perform at their best.
Photo: Noatronic solution demonstrating their wireless guitar system based on RTX technology
Design company KREAFUNK defies the corona crisis
Despite corona, the design company KREAFUNK is now stronger than ever with one million products sold and strong partnerships lined up with, e.g. Sound Hub Denmark
The owners of KREAFUNK, Ruben Fog-Fredsgaard and Kenneth Melchoff Bahsen, look back on ten years of growth and innovation with the lifestyle brand KREAFUNK. It has not always been a walk in the park.
When corona hit the world, the turnover dropped by 80 per cent the first month. Despite this, the company came out after corona more robust and with one million sold products since 2011.
“The initiatives we took during corona have been critical to getting KREAFUNK to where it is today. We accepted government aid and sent a large group of our staff home; and we’ve collaborated with investor and business angel Claus Hommelhoff to strengthen our company and ensure future growth. We lowered our zero-point turnover by 9 million Danish kroner by changing location and cutting away all non-vital costs. It was a process we started in 2019.”
In addition, we continued product development of new commercial products with a higher margin to get to the best possible starting point when the international fairs reopened,
Kenneth Melchoff Bahnsen explains.
It turned out to be a prudent strategy for KREAFUNK. When the Paris fair Maison & Objet reopened in the fall of 2021 with fewer exhibitors than normal, KREAFUNK was ready with a more extensive product portfolio of new products than ever before. The fair gave a better result than ever and opened up to new markets, including Japan, where KREAFUNK sees enormous potential.
Extraordinary delays in deliveries also challenged KREAFUNK in Q4 2021, where seven containers did not arrive for the X-mas season via traditional freight options. The founders had to spend five million extra to get their sound products to Denmark.
We knew it would affect our annual result, but also realised we had to make this decision, if we were to survive.
Kenneth Melchoff Bahsen continues. Since the beginning, KREAFUNKs sound products have been in most of the major Danish department stores such as Magasin, Salling and Bahne and with many different retailers across 30-35 other markets.
“After the first ten years, we are delighted with our position in the Danish market and worldwide. But dreams run much higher than the 30-35 different markets we are in right now. Through a focused product and brand development and CSR approach, we believe we will be able to extend our brand awareness and position in these markets in the coming years and add more markets as well,” Ruben Fog-Fredsgaard concludes.
Over the years, KREAFUNK has launched more exciting products; and established partnerships incl. essential collaborations with retailers and distributors that have strengthened its position.
Also, the collaboration with Sound Hub Denmark – a global powerhouse for sound, technology and acoustics – is part of this approach.
Sound Hub facilitate matchmaking and builds bridges between companies. Such introductions and support have helped KREAFUNK tune into which current and future products they will take to the next level as part of their expansion plans.
KREAFUNK is a Danish lifestyle brand designing sound products such as Bluetooth speakers, headphones, and designed power banks that match the latest trends in fashion and interior design and are updated with the latest technology inside.
Photo credit: Julius Sønderhave and Ducor Productions
Develco Enters into Partnership Agreement with Sound Hub Denmark
With Bang & Olufsen, Struer is known as the City of Sound and attracts an ever-increasing number of interesting national and international sound projects. In the future, the development house Develco will be in Struer at Sound Hub Denmark.
Develco has +30 years of experience in realizing creative product ideas into finished products using development competences within electronics, embedded software, wireless communication and IoT (Internet of Things). Develco works with development projects for both established companies and entrepreneurs.
At Sound Hub Denmark, Develco now becomes a mentor and a sparring partner for the network of entrepreneurs, start-ups, freelancers, and established companies with sound projects. Develco contributes with new knowledge and competences within technologies such as low battery consumption and wireless communication via the communication protocols Bluetooth and Bluetooth Low Energy BLE.
At Develco, we see many new initiatives in sound technology, which is why we have chosen to help the companies at Sound Hub Denmark to get started with their interesting ideas for new sound products. We look forward to being present in this professional sound cluster in Struer and collaborate with the audio companies and their creative ideas for future sound experiences,
says CEO/CSO Jakob Bjerre at Develco A/S.
At Sound Hub Denmark, we want to offer our users and tenants easy access to professional competences, and Develco is strengthening this offer.
Develco’s range of technology competences is in demand, and this makes us excited about the agreement that we are convinced will lead to faster and better product development,
concludes CEO Peter Petersen, Sound Hub Denmark.
About Develco A/S
Since 1989, Develco has been developing technological product solutions and managing electronics production for large industrial customers and innovative start-ups. The development projects are typically within IoT (Internet of Things), wireless communication technology, sensors, gateways, and motor controls, and Develco is constantly striving to work with the very latest technologies. Develco is a dynamic and agile organization with +25 employees and ensures the continuous development of the employees. Today, Develco is an independent company in the Trifork Group with +1000 employees.
Read more about Develco at www.develco.com.
Roku joins Sound Hub Denmark
Roku’s Danish Audio Team to join and support world-class sound, technology and acoustics growth hub fostering innovation within the field of audio.
Roku Inc. (NASDAQ: ROKU) and Sound Hub Denmark today announced its membership and participation in Sound Hub Denmark, a world-class sound and acoustics growth hub designed to foster innovation within the field of audio. Joining other members including Bang & Olufsen, Harman and Dynaudio, Roku’s Denmark-based audio and acoustics teams will provide coaching and mentoring – and present on topics around home theater and audio at Sound Hub Denmark events.
‘At Roku we have assembled teams of acoustic, wireless audio and DSP experts, with audio R&D and testing facilities around the world,’ said Brian Møller, vice president of Engineering, at Roku.
We are honored to be a member of Sound Hub Denmark and are looking forward to participating in this inspiring environment while supporting Denmark’s strong audio heritage and thriving acoustics ecosystem.
‘As a leading streaming platform and provider of innovative sound solutions designed to provide inspiring home theater audio, Roku is a welcome addition to the Sound Hub,’ said Peter Petersen, CEO of Sound Hub Denmark.
Having Roku’s participation further adds to our mission to become a world-leading innovation hub for companies and individuals exploring and leading the way in the domains of sound and acoustics.
Roku pioneered streaming to the TV. They connect users to the streaming content they love, enable content publishers to build and monetize large audiences, and provide advertisers with unique capabilities to engage consumers. Roku streaming players and TV-related audio devices are available in the U.S. and in select countries through direct retail sales and licensing arrangements with service operators. Roku TV™ models are available in the U.S. and in select countries through licensing arrangements with TV OEM brands. Roku is headquartered in San Jose, California, U.S.A.
Roku is a registered trademark and Roku TV is a trademark of Roku, Inc. in the U.S. and in other countries.
Nordic Podcast Academy broadens the sound perspective
At Sound Hub Denmark, we take a broad perspective on sound and acoustics. It is not just about technology, speakers, and music – it’s also about silence, noise, welfare, media, communication, art, entertainment and much more, when establishing a learning community for sound businesses of tomorrow.
This is why Sound Hub Denmark decided to house activities such as the Nordic Podcast Academy, established in partnership with Struer Municipality, the Danish School of Media and Journalism and Dorte Palle and Tor Arnbjørn, both former managers at DR, Danish Broadcasting Corporation. All courses and educations are facilitated by the partners together with sound designer Jesper Lundager from City of Sound. The partnership is united by a shared objective to create an international Nordic anchored platform for new talents, journalists, and media professionals.
The Nordic Podcast Academy is an initiative to extend the strong position of sound in Denmark building on a long and strong tradition of deep interviews and storytelling on-air, but never before with a formal educational program and talent scouting dedicated to the podcasting media.
Good podcasting – a skill to be learned
Although many podcasts sound like they are a conversation without preparation, storytelling and production quality should not be underestimated, states co-founder of Nordic Podcast Academy Dorte Palle.
Good podcasting is much more than someone turning on a microphone – rather, it is a carefully scheduled narrative in an environment that inspires the listener. We offer courses in both Danish and English. You can attend talent camps, production courses, take a diploma graduate course or get professional sparring and feedback on your podcasts.
Podcasts for informative amusement
Podcasts have enjoyed massive success in recent years and have seen rapid growth in reach and usage, attracting a younger audience. It fills out a void, and heavy users tend to be 15 to 31 years old.
It is mainly about content, but the form needs to be considered to deliver the content and catch the listener’s attention. As opposed to nearly all other media, podcasts are characterised by being almost inherently long form. On average, podcasts are at least 30 minutes long, and many are much longer. Most podcasts are knowledge-based and give audiences the possibility to take deep dives into specific areas and topics. This allows publishers to communicate advanced information and nuanced messages, which would often be close to impossible on other platforms.
When asked what they prefer to listen to, most listeners settle on ‘informative amusement’ as their preferred content characteristic.
Sequential loyal listeners
Podcasting is not a platform or channel of communication that substitutes existing media channels. It is a new tool expanding the connection to audiences. In recent years, the serial nature of podcasts has become the standard modus of listening.
Hardly anyone listens to single episodes. This means podcasts should be produced in series. Some of the most successful podcasts have published several hundred episodes,
according to Tor Arnbjørn, co-founder of Nordic Podcast Academy.
There is a huge loyalty between audiences and podcasters. Once listeners are hooked, a majority will continue to listen to episode after episode over several months. Therefore, podcasts should be given time to succeed, and many listeners tend to “back listen” in their podcast feeds once they discover a new podcast.
CEO Sound Hub Denmark Peter Petersen further adds:
We see the Nordic Podcast Academy as a great supplement for story tellers interested in using sound and media on relevant topics. The educational environment for sound communication; in this case podcasting – is a perfect addition to the business and development activities running in our exceptional facilities for sound innovation.
About Nordic Podcast Academy
Nordic Podcast Academy wants to be the top place for education in podcasting in the Nordic countries, providing the best teachers, activities, and facilities for podcast courses targeting people on different levels of experience and knowledge. Podcasting is an international type of content with a Nordic profile. The goal is that it will become a centre of education directed at participants from the entire Nordic region and broader international relations. At the premises of Sound Hub Denmark, Nordic Podcast Academy becomes part of existing international sound development and innovative environment with access to world-class facilities and a professional sound network.
150 students have since 2019 been part of a camp, course, or education.
The reinvention of the headphones: Neckphones by Circulr
To reduce accidents in micro-mobility, Circulr Sound Tech ApS offers an open-ear AI sound technology by introducing neckphones for the modern lifestyle. Discover the latest game-changer audio tech startup that has joined Sound Hub in Struer, Denmark.
‘Sound in motion’ is how Circulr describes its brand. They combine; headphones, wearables and loudspeakers – all in one device for customers on the go. Further, the user can easily change the ear pads and also choose different sizes, colours and materials depending on the season and trend.
Circulr has read the market and spotted an urgent need to be safer on an e-scooter or bicycle while still enjoying the ride listening to music or making calls when commuting in the city. Due to their pioneering open-ear sound technology, designed for mobility and micro-mobility, we are pleased they chose our hub for their head office,
CEO of Sound Hub Denmark Peter Petersen explains.
A game-changer in headphones
How can it be a game-changer? Referring to a study made by the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS) the number of e-scooter accidents and hospital admissions between 2014 and 2018 has increased by 222% and 365% – a trend that is expected to continue in the coming years. To reduce the situations compromising safety, Circulr has developed a new category of sound wearables with artificial intelligence (AI) and a voice-controlled (VUI) platform that opens a hands-free universe on the go.
According to CEO and founder Enoc Armengol:
The use of headphones has become the number one cause of accidents in micro-mobility in the EU, US & UK. With Neckphones, people can wear them on the neck with the open ear audio technology, feel immersive sound and still hear their surroundings with non-invasive sound. As an example, you can get audible directions and avoid getting lost and be safer while moving without having to pay attention to the screen of the smartphone.
First launched with crowdfunding
The first hybrid headphones by Circulr were the Buoq Axis. A product launched with over 100k € in crowdfunding to test and validate the need for this new product category on the market. Now they are developing a new sustainable Circulr model, along with freelance expert engineers with background from prestigious brands such as Bang & Olufsen and Harman. Also, they are developing an AI app with 3D audio to extend the user’s unique music experience even more. The launch of this new product is expected by October 2021.
Circulr Sound Tech ApS was established in May 2021 at Sound Hub Denmark, Peter Bangs Vej 17, Denmark.
About Circulr Sound Tech
A start-up founded by a group of award-winning entrepreneurs from various fields such as product design and sound engineering. The revolutionary concept behind the Neckphones is the ability to transform into wearable loudspeakers with an immersive and powerful sound of surprising quality that is being patented. The concept is also helping to reduce electronic waste by its combination of headphones and speakers into one device. Also, it supports the modern lifestyle following the trend of owning less and saving space. Circulr has won several international awards such as the ‘Start-up Launchpad Award’ in Hong Kong and also received the first prize in 2021 in the category Tech for Entertainment at the South by Southwest event held in Austin, Texas.
Transducer-manufacturer Ole Wolff joins Sound Hub
ANNOUNCEMENT: An active partnership collaboration between the worldwide acknowledged Ole Wolff Electronics A/S and Sound Hub Denmark is now a reality. Ole Wolff Electronics is one of the leading manufacturers of high-quality transducers and magnetics. They provide custom-designed solutions for a broad range of first-tier companies in the consumer electronics industry.
We have decided to join and partner with Sound Hub because we have a shared target group – the sound and acoustics industry – and see great business potential in the hub concentration of competences. We expect potential synergy with Sound Hub Denmark, which is attracting a lot of innovative and interesting sound companies that will benefit from our solutions,
states Morten Kjeldsen, Specialist in Micro Acoustics at Ole Wolff Electronics.
Ole Wolff Electronics will be establishing a fly-in office at the premises in Struer and will be an active co-worker in several areas. First and foremost, mentoring and sparring to start-ups and with an intent to plan and speak at events and seminars within their line of expertise.
Morten Kjeldsen is one of the first to be present with a desk at Sound Hub Denmark:
I look forward to meeting and working with all the interesting people in these wonderful surroundings. Here you have both a touch of the past and a look to the future in one place. Meeting other like-minded people is always inspiring, and I hope to be challenged by new ideas and be able to offer sparring and input to start-ups and other innovators I’ll meet here.
For companies at Sound Hub, one of the benefits will be that Ole Wolff Electronics will offer products and solutions for prototypes at highly attractive terms. This will benefit start-ups in terms of cost savings in the early stages of product development. This has already been relevant for the creation of prototypes for the Sound Kit, a sound teaching platform for youth education run by Sound Hub, where STEM topics are explored through sound. Besides, residents will find Ole Wolff Electronics products as part of the materials library.
We are happy to welcome Ole Wolff Electronics, who will be a great contribution to the skill set here at Sound Hub. Our job will be to match them with relevant clients and partners that are here short or long term. We believe they can provide yet another great offering if you work in the sound industry or related areas’,
CEO of Sound Hub Denmark, Peter Petersen concludes.
About Ole Wolff A/S
Ole Wolff A/S is recognized worldwide for its high-quality transducers and magnetics product portfolio. Combining Danish acoustic technology and product design with Chinese manufacturing results in innovative high performing products at a competitive price. Ole Wolff offers unique design capabilities and a high level of expertise in providing customized solutions to a broad range of market segments from consumer to industrial electronics. Ole Wolff is a truly global corporation with headquarters in Denmark, sales offices in nine locations worldwide, three R&D and application support centres with ISO9001, ISO14001, and TS16949 approved manufacturing facilities in Asia.
STEENSSEN: Time has come to bring manufacturing back
2020 has been a challenging year, and it hasn’t been any different for the loudspeaker company STEENSSEN. From relying heavily on China for the production of their speakers, they are now moving their entire product-chain back to Struer and the surrounding area.
It has been a while and a lot of things have changed since the last article about STEENSSEN – the Danish speaker company from China that wanted to establish itself in Struer with the help from Sound Hub Denmark – and now did.
A global pandemic and trade wars have changed the way supply chains work, and many companies – including STEENSSEN – have realized that relying on China as a manufacturing hub also comes with a risk.
What has not changed, however, is the founder, Frederick Rickmann, and his Scottish accent. Once again, he has agreed to talk about the present and the future for his speaker company, and what the last year has meant for STEENSSEN.
The supply chain that broke
According to him, the pandemic is not actually the only reason that he now chooses to produce the entire speaker in Denmark.
The supply-chain did not work because of political reasons as well as corona reasons,
“The more Trump put pressure on China, the more reluctant small businesses in China were to do business.”
STEENSSEN started the year with an event in Sound Hub Denmark that the CEO called a “success”, and despite corona looming over most of 2020, the trend continued. As it turns out, the year ended very upbeat and built on the success from the early launch in Struer. The turnover improved considerably during the winter months.
We thought we would sell more now that people have to stay more at home, and we did,
Frederick Rickmann says.
The supplier in the TV
But STEENSSEN still wanted to move production back to Denmark and avoid being dependent on China as a supplier. This has been a process going on for a long time for the company – finding more suppliers and parts in Denmark. First it was seen as a way to increase brand value in Asia by being able to put a “Made in Denmark” label on the speakers, now as a necessity if STEENSSEN has to stay in business.
So far, the focus has mostly been on finding new suppliers of the technology inside the speakers.
Now that everything has to be produced in Denmark, it has also forced STEENSSEN to think outside of the box.
According to Frederick Rickmann, it is hard to find Danish companies who can compete with China’s centuries of experience with lacquering the wood for the cabinets.
It was a stroke of luck that Frederick Rickmann was watching the news on the TV one night. In a segment about a factory in Herning, he found what he was looking for:
“In the background, I saw that they had piles and piles of the material that we use for our speaker cabinets. Later on, I saw that they had the machines that we need to produce the cabinets as well,” he says.
The segment was actually about a company in Herning producing exhibition stands, but he saw the potential and got in touch with the man from the TV.
I asked him if he would like to make speaker cabinets, and he said that he was interested,
Frederick Rickmann says.
But it is not just the visible parts of the speakers that STEENSSEN now uses the opportunity to upgrade:
“Our speakers from 2017 have Bluetooth 4.0, but the speakers on the market today have the version 5.0. If I had to buy a product as a consumer, I would not pick the product with the old specification,” Frederick Rickmann says.
The STEENSSEN founder says that the prices of the new speakers will start from around 15000 Danish kroner, although a lot still has to fall in place, before they are actually produced. So far, he is testing the waters by allowing customers to preorder the new speakers at a heavily discounted price.
Since we opened for preorders we have received 56 orders. In addition we have many new business enquiries from North America, India and Europe which all indicate that we are on the right track,
he says and adds that most of the preorders are for the largest speaker in the new lineup.
However, STEENSSEN still has a long way to go before they are a well-known speaker brand like many of their competitors. One of the ways to become more known is by making it more accessible to more people.
The result of the strategy will likely be clear sometime in 2021.
Until then, Frederick Rickmann can look back on a year that has taught him and STEENSSEN a lot:
I think the time has come to bring manufacturing back to Europe and especially to Denmark. It is also really important in terms of the climate challenges that we manufacture more regionally, creating jobs in Europe and also bringing know-how back again to Denmark,
he says and smiles:
If we are to meet the governments climate targets we have to think in these terms. I am confident that we can develop and manufacture the new audio products entirely within the ‘Jydsk Korridor – The Struer Sound Cluster. You can’t be reliant on people on the other side of the planet for making critical components,
Watch Frederick Rickmann in this video, where he elaborates further on the ambitions for the STEENSSEN brand.
The referred to article from January 2020 about the background for the strategic change in supply chain of STEENSSEN can be found here.
Since the article was written, STEENSSEN has established an R&D branch of his company at Sound Hub Denmark.
The sound club expands with a top-of-class corporate player: Dynaudio joins Sound Hub Denmark
The legendary Danish loudspeaker manufacturer Dynaudio has joined the team at Sound Hub Denmark to benefit from the talents, network and facilities of an ecosystem dedicated to audio innovation.
They are joining a world-class workplace and sound-and-acoustics growth hub for start-ups, freelancers, SMEs and corporates. Aside from great interest from start-ups, Sound Hub now sees increasing interest from corporate players to benefit from being physically present among the diverse and versatile group of people in-house.
Dynaudio has been designing, engineering and building legendary loudspeakers in Denmark for decades and is world-famous for making hand-crafted high-end loudspeakers for living rooms, cars and professional recording studios. The company is engaged in an active partnership with Sound Hub Denmark to drive innovation. And future guests at the conference area – The Sound Square – will now also enjoy Dynaudio sound performance thanks to two pairs of pro-audio speakers being installed.
Collaboration is the new way to innovation
Gaining access to and sharing knowledge with other industry partners and start-ups in joint physical locations is a trend you see spreading across many industries. It is quickly becoming the new way to innovation, according to CTO Jens Lynge Petersen:
We’re thrilled to be joining Sound Hub Denmark. We have been a legendary part of the Danish audio landscape since 1977, thanks to our high-end speakers and drivers built in-house. Working with Sound Hub means we can bring our knowledge and skills to new and exciting projects. Our team members will be physically present on a regular basis and can’t wait to get started with our cooperation.
The partnership with Dynaudio brings many years of experience of high-end audio from the international scene into the game. The company’s products are trusted by award-winning producers and musicians, premium automotive brands and discerning home listeners. They offer knowledge and brand recognition – from which newcomers within the sound domain can benefit, too. Peter Petersen, CEO of Sound Hub Denmark, adds:
It is a great pleasure to have Dynaudio on board as a partner, co-worker and contributing sponsor. We see Dynaudio as a global ambassador for us, as well as actively supporting talented start-ups here. A fast way to get to quality sound experiences and enter into a dialogue with a knowable industry player can be essential to drive innovation. We also hope to inspire and contribute to Dynaudio’s corporate innovation in our matchmaking activities.
As a partner, Dynaudio will be introduced to new and exciting business opportunities, as well as gaining access to test and meeting facilities, plus events and networking groups – and all the related benefits you have when sharing a location with brands from other parts of the industry.
Dynaudio has been researching, designing, engineering and building legendary loudspeakers in Denmark since 1977, and is world-famous for making hand-crafted high-end loudspeakers for living rooms, cars and professional recording studios. Dynaudio works with one single-minded purpose; to deliver recordings exactly as the artist intended them to be heard. All speakers emerge from Dynaudio Labs, the state-of-the-art R&D centre in Denmark. Their products are trusted by award-winning producers and musicians, premium automotive brands and discerning home listeners for more than 40 years.
Learn more about Dynaudio here