Denmark is a significant player in sound and acoustics internationally, and even large companies such as Harman see the benefit of this. The whole country provides a unique startup culture, where world-known brands and highly advanced knowledge institutions collaborate. The tradition for knowledge sharing and the availability of competences within small distances can offer the ideal head start in the industry. And that's precisely why Harman sees its collaboration with Sound Hub Denmark as a natural continuation of its presence in Struer.
Harman designs and engineers connected products and solutions for the automotive, consumer and enterprise markets worldwide, with leading audio brands including AKG, Harman Kardon, Infinity, JBL, Lexicon, Mark Levinson and Revel, in its consumer division. The company has a workforce of approximately 33,000 people across the Americas, Europe and Asia and continues to expand as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics since the acquisition in 2017.
Since its inception, Sound Hub Denmark was supported by leading audio companies active in this North of Denmark region, such us Bang & Olufsen (who previously owned those original buildings), GN Audio (Jabra), GRAS Sound & Vibration, and Harman Lifestyle, among others. The Sound Hub Denmark project is located in an original red stone factory building with architecture dating back to 1946, and the former location of the Bang & Olufsen R&D department until 2018.
Sound Hub Denmark is now the world’s first international sound technology and innovation hub – a cluster for sound innovation. The project offers unique business acceleration opportunities in a sound professional co-working environment with access to excellent measurement, workshop and test facilities, and a unique craft cluster with supplementary competences; as well as a network of highly specialized skills from industry-leaders, mentors, and knowledge institutions. Additional partners include Scan-Speak and the Aalborg University.
"Our team in Struer is mainly dealing with automotive sound concept ideation and prototyping, i.e. the early stages in the development process, much like the start-ups we get to know via Sound Hub Denmark", states Gorm Haldor Jørgensen, Director of Global EPIC Experience Team, Harman.
"We are always looking for talent, ideas and new investment possibilities, when we work with companies or individuals like the contacts established through Sound Hub Denmark. In addition, we collaborate with Danish Universities in sound and acoustics, so we see our partnership as a long-term investment where we participate in sparring, coaching and events at Sound Hub Denmark – an investment that will contribute to our ability to maintain a strong position in sound innovation in the future."
Besides coaching and sparring in the early stages of product development, Harman also offers companies at Sound Hub Denmark access to its test and prototyping facilities next door. The Harman Lifestyle Division is situated on the same campus as Sound Hub Denmark and participates actively in the events taking place on-site.
"For Sound Hub Denmark, industry partners are essential," the CEO of Sound Hub Denmark Peter Petersen explains. "We want to be able to offer access to relevant investors and collaborators at our site in addition to our first-class facilities. Our objective is to increase sound innovation on both a national and international level. Harman is one of the major players here and hence a very important active partner for us."
soundhub.dk | www.harman.com