Studer Expands U.S. Sales Operation, Adds Rob Lewis
Studer, an audio-console brand under the Harman Professional umbrella, is making a push to increase its brand-name recognition in the U.S. by increasing its sales force and moving to direct distribution. To lead that effort on the ground, the company has appointed a new sales director, Rob Lewis. Working out of Harman’s campus in Northridge, CA, he will join Studer’s international sales and customer-service team.
“The customer base for Studer is broad and vast,” says Keith Watson, marketing director for the Harman professional division. “We have more broadcast customers around the world than anybody else, from small individual radio stations to large networks like the BBC, but we’re not there in the U.S. By adding great resources in the U.S., like Rob, our objective is to become No. 1 in the U.S. as well.”
Previously, Lewis served as sales director for Euphonix, but he also boasts numerous credits as a freelance audio engineer. Having mixed more than 30 albums, he was nominated for a 1996 Grammy Award for Tim O’Brien’s Red on Blonde in the Bluegrass category. He went on to work for Euphonix in 1998.
Although the company has development hubs around the world, all of Harman’s broadcast technologies are developed near Zurich, Switzerland, so the company is making a concerted effort to get the factory more involved in the U.S. market with direct distribution.
“That’s not what we’ve done before,” Watson explains. “It’s a realization from Harman that the U.S. is very important. We haven’t, up until now, had the resources to service our customers here, especially on the East Coast. The closer you get to any market, you find idiosyncrasies that you might not have been so acutely aware of until you get people on the ground. That’s what our market needs, and that’s what we’re looking forward to.”
Studer has also recruited Katy Templeman-Holmes to serve as product manager for the Studer OnAir product line, as well as to push brand development in the U.S.
Says Watson, “We’re now able to spread the Studer brand a lot further.”