December 2013 Archives

Yamaha Acquires Line 6

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Yamaha announced on Dec. 20 that the company and Line 6, California-based manufacturer of guitar amps and related products, PA equipment and wireless microphones agreed Yamaha's merger of Line 6.

In the news release, Yamaha revealed that it's a part of Yamaha Management Plan 2016, a 3-year corporate growth plan, which sets M&A and capital alliance one of the primary strategies.

Launched in 1996, Line 6 has established a high reputation with a host of innovative products to support guitarists, and later PA equipment and wireless microphones. It achieved 69 million U.S. dollars sales in 2012.

The acquisition is expected to enhance Yamaha's guitar related products and PA equipment portfolio and further improve performance of musical instrument and audio products segments.

The agreement was approved by Yamaha Board of Directors on Dec. 20, and will be closed by the end of January 2014. The transaction completes by reverse subsidiary merger through acquisition of Line 6 by Yamaha's new subsidiary established for the merger.

Yamaha Restructures Domestic Manufacturing Operations

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Based on the restructuring plans announced in July, 2012, Yamaha confirmed at the annual directors meeting held on Oct. 31, to reorganize domestic music and audio products manufacturing operations, launching 3 new subsidiaries 100% invested by Yamaha.

Recent rapidly changing international business environment has seriously damaged price competitiveness of Japanese manufacturers in all segments. In the past Yamaha has transferred domestic parts production and assembly plants for entry and mid range products overseas. The latest launch of the new subsidiaries is expected to increase efficiency of domestic production, enhance management capabilities and expedite timely corporate decision. While domestic production of music and audio products are succeeded by the 3 new subsidiaries, Yamaha plans that each factory shares production when necessary for further integrated and cost-effective overall operation.

Former Kakegawa and Iwata piano factories in Shizuoka Pref. will be renamed to Yamaha Piano Manufacturing Co., Ltd., and wind instrument division at Toyooka factory will be undertaken by Yamaha Musical Products Co., Ltd. Digital music and audio products divisions at Toyooka factory will be consolidated at Yamaha Music Electronics Co., Ltd.

The new 3 subsidiaries start operation on April 1st.


Seiko Instruments staged a dealer/press conference to announce STX7 tuner featuring a world's first rechargeable LED light, and EPM5000 remote-controlled quartz pendulum type metronome on Nov. 7 at Wako, Ginza, Tokyo.

Wako, a landmark in the shopping district of Ginza as an established retail store for luxury items, has a symbolic clock tower on top of the building. Seiko chose the site to be most suitable for announcing the new products and express the corporate strategy to further increase presence and brand awareness in music market.

STX7 has a rechargeable USB-connectible power supply system and a white LED light, and can be clipped on music stand. Super luminescent high-contrast LCD display screen and a level indicator with a lens clearly show pitch names even under sunlight. With excellent tuning accuracy and sensitivity, it detects pitch from treble to bass range in quick response.  (photo left)

EPM5000 is the first remote-controlled quartz metronome with a pendulum, capable of detecting tempo precisely on unsmooth surface.

It allows designating desired rhythm and tempo sound from 8 rhythm patterns and 3 sound types. A speaker is built-in. As rhythm and sound volume are controlled at a distance, it's ideal for music practice, band lesson and in music classroom.

Norio-Maeda.jpgThe dealers and press members enjoyed a mini concert by Norio Maeda, name jazz pianist, composer and band leader, after experienced the features and functions of the new products on display. A close friend of Shinji Hattori, Seiko Holdings CEO, Maeda enthralled the audience with such standard jazz numbers as Misty, Autumn in New York and Air on G String on Roland EG-3F digital piano. (photo right)

Usually not opened for visitors, the clock tower presented the dealers and press members a unique opportunity to have a spectacular night view over Ginza and enjoy ringing sound of the bells.


3rd Bechstein Salon Opens in Tokyo

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Euro Piano, Japan exclusive distributor for German Bechstein Piano, celebrated opening of Akasaka Bechsein Salon on Nov. 27. It's the 3rd    premise in Tokyo.

Located on the basement of Kokusai Shin Akasaka Bldg., West Wing, opposite of Akasaka Sacas Shopping Complex, it has an excellent accessibility just 2 minutes walk from Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line Akasaka Station.

The Salon has 2 showrooms, an office and a 25-seat mini studio on 30 sq. meter space. It's designed to provide Bechstein dealers and piano technicians with a meeting point to get information on Bechstein pianos and sales support from Euro Piano.

In celebration of the opening, it hosted a concert and a series of seminars by Ryoichi Totsuka, president and Masato Kato, vice president Euro Piano on Dec. 3.   


Yamaha Silent Brass Wins Good Design Award

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Yamaha SB3X, SB5X and SB7X Silent Brass instruments were awarded 2013 Good Design Award Gold Medal. Advanced sound canceling capability, high quality authentic sound, characteristic shape and design, and environment-friendly concept won acclaim from the juries. They commented that the instruments were designed not only with functions and structure but also attractive appearance in mind. They highly evaluated signal-processing technology used for the instruments as further advancement is expected in the future.

Yamaha Silent Cello also won Good Design Long Life Design Award.

Roland Europe S.p.A Closes

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Roland Corporation announced on November 6 that it would close Roland Europe S.p.A., Italy-based subsidiary. Founded in December 1987 acquiring SIEL, Italian digital musical instruments manufacturer, Roland Europe S.p.A. served as a product development and manufacturing base in Europe. It mainly manufactured digital pianos, electronic keyboards and accordions to be largely distributed in Europe. Under the new corporate structural programs revealed a year ago, Roland is now consolidating digital piano production to Indonesia. 

It's a transition from 'Local production matched to individual markets' policy to 'Integration for efficient production' policy, and Roland came to a conclusion that it's the best way to close the Italian operation.