STAMFORD, CT – Harman International Industries, Incorporated (NYSE: HAR) said today that the Company has successfully launched a record 13 major audio and infotainment platforms for leading global automakers in less than 24 months. This is believed to be the largest such project backlog ever implemented by a supplier in the automotive entertainment sector, spanning custom in-car audio, navigation, hands-free communication and driver assist technologies. Customers for the recent model launches include Audi, BMW, Chrysler, Hyundai, Mercedes, Porsche, PSA Peugeot Citroen, and Ssangyong.
“We made a conscious effort to invest heavily in engineering and R&D in order to launch these multiple platforms on time and on quality,” said Dinesh C. Paliwal, Harman’s Chairman and CEO. “Based on the success of these new launches and significant operational improvements, we are well positioned to execute on future project awards.”
Since introducing the world’s first car radio in 1949, Harman has pioneered a continuing series of automotive multimedia innovations including surround sound, DVD video, turn-by-turn and 3-D navigation, wireless connectivity, and driver safety features. An estimated 20 million vehicles on the road today are equipped with Harman systems under the Company’s flagship brands including Becker, Harman/Kardon, Infinity, JBL, Lexicon, and Mark Levinson.
“We are proud of the tremendous effort from our employees and the support of loyal customers as we executed on these projects during a period of unusual economic challenge and other potential distractions,” Paliwal continued. “These successful launches give Harman and its customers the newest and most technologically advanced portfolio in our industry, and these new products will provide the majority of our automotive infotainment revenues in coming years.”
Virtually every luxury car produced today is available with Harman systems. Harman-equipped cars have earned several recent industry awards including the Hyundai Genesis Sedan (2009 Car of the Year, Detroit Auto Show), the BMW 7-Series (2009 Most Technologically Advanced New Vehicle, iSupply), and the Porsche Communication Management System (2008 Useware Award, Association of German Engineers). Ferrari honored Harman with its 2008 Technology Award and Mercedes-Benz named the Company as one of its Top Ten Suppliers in early 2009.
During the past year, Harman has announced additional audio or infotainment project awards from several automakers including BMW, Ferrari, Land Rover, Mercedes and Mini. To complement the skills of its established resources in Europe and the United States, the Company has opened new Engineering and R&D centers in China and India and a new manufacturing plant in China during the past year. Harman recently announced a new line of energy-efficient performance audio systems and formed an exclusive partnership with Lotus Engineering to develop sound synthesis technologies for electric and hybrid cars.
Harman International (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets a wide range of audio and infotainment products for the automotive, consumer and professional markets. The Company maintains a strong presence in the Americas, Europe and Asia and employs about 10,500 people worldwide. The Harman International family of brands spans some 15 leading names including AKG, Becker, BSS, Crown, dbx, DigiTech, Harman Kardon, Infinity, JBL, Lexicon, Mark Levinson, Revel, QNX, Soundcraft and Studer. The Company’s stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "HAR".