Razer today announced that it acquired THX Ltd, the audio technology company, for an undisclosed amount. Razer brought a majority of THX's assets and have retained the management and employees of the company. THX will continue to operate as an independent startup under its current management and can continue to pursue licensing agreements with other partners beyond its new parent company.
"Razer has a vision for innovation at every level of entertainment, a vision which THX has championed since its inception more than 30 years ago," says Razer CEO Min-Liang Tan. "This acquisition will allow us to reinforce Razer's leadership in gaming and extend the brand into broader areas of entertainment, while at the same time empowering THX to develop into a global powerhouse, independently."
"Our focus has always been on ensuring that anyone can experience high quality entertainment, regardless of their medium of choice. With Razer, we can now continue to strengthen our core lines of business while delivering excellence for our customers' ever-changing needs. As a standalone company, THX will work with Razer but will primarily continue to service our partners in the industry in order to deliver great products to consumers," adds THX CEO Ty Ahmad-Taylor.
"The value of THX rests in its bedrock competencies with certification, optimization of audio and intellectual property development. We expect Ty, Laurie, and the executive team and employees of THX, who we have also retained, to continue leading the world in innovations and technology in the audiovisual space," says Tan.
THX was founded by George Lucas back in 1983, to create film audio standards for the release of Star Wars: Return of the Jedi. The company develops and certifies specific standards for high-fidelity audio movies, home theatre, video games, PC, and car audio. It's basically a quality assurance program for high-end audio. Why?
"We had a partner that had a set of surround-sound speakers. They were not best-in-class, nor were they selling well," wrote Ahmad-Taylor earlier this year. "After working with that partner to improve the speakers, it became a several hundred million dollar a year business for them. We help partners make money by upping their quality standards."
At the time, he explained that THX was going to extend into further areas in 2016 and beyond, adding consumer products for the first time and including new certifications for virtual reality, augmented reality, streaming services, bluetooth speakers, and cable set-top boxes.
"We sold because Razer gives us a rock-solid foundation for executing on the three core areas of business. We will function as a standalone unit. However, I wouldn't be surprised if we launched a few joint products with Razer," Ahmad-Taylor says in a follow-up statement posted today. "I am reporting to Min-Liang Tan, the CEO of Razer, and he and I have a shared vision for creating great products that solve customer problems (his in gaming, mine in audio-video)."