Bowers & Wilkins has announced that it will function without representation from Eva Automation, the Silicon Valley company that bought it in 2016.
In an official statement to What Hi-Fi?, B&W said the two companies will “continue to co-operate with each other where mutually beneficial”. It is not known if Eva Automation has disposed of its stake in B&W.
Meanwhile, B&W will refocus its operations on what it does best as the statement added: “The brand’s stakeholders are actively supporting its activities while it re-focuses its world-class resources on the research and development, manufacture and distribution of premium loudspeakers, audio components and headphones.”
Eva Automation’s buying into B&W, the biggest British speaker specialist, had resulted mostly in a change in direction towards developing wireless lifestyle products like the Formation series. B&W had invested quite a substantial amount into research and development to design and manufacture the wireless products.
However, B&W remains bullish about its future: “The overall business performance of Bowers & Wilkins remains very good. The brand has just enjoyed one of its best-ever sales quarters, has a full order book for its premium 800 Series Diamond loudspeakers and has won multiple Awards for many of its newly released products. At the same time, its partnerships with Philips TV, BMW, Maserati, McLaren and Volvo continue to thrive. There will be several exciting new product launches in the months to come to help build upon this sustained track record of success.
“Bowers & Wilkins will continue to develop and manufacture world-class audio products, having successfully diversified its product portfolio into new categories over the past decade. The company will continue to evolve its offering as new technologies and opportunities permit. The brand remains committed to maintaining its UK and overseas operations, with the company’s headquarters, R&D facility and premium manufacturing remaining in the UK.”
The earlier What Hi-Fi? report had said Gideon Yu, who led the Eva Automation takeover, and Gregory Lee, the recently-appointed CEO, are no longer leading Bowers & Wilkins.
At the same time, David Duggins was appointed as “sole Independent Director”. Duggins has 25 years’ experience in the restructuring market, having previously held both formal insolvency and advisory roles. He will work alongside Geoff Edwards, who has been Executive VP Operations at B&W for over 17 years, What Hi-Fi? reported.