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Monday, August 8, 2016

Audiophiles unite: Roland buys V-Moda to help ‘inspire the future of music’

Italian-designed audio brand V-Moda, known for designing headphones that say as much about style as they do sound, has today announced a new partnership with pro audio company Roland that will see Roland acquire 70 percent of the headphone maker. The partnership will increase V-Moda’s resources, according to the brand, allowing for more product development, and a bigger push into the global marketplace.

“For more than a decade, we have vigorously crafted high-end personal audio products for modern audiophiles that reproduce music for a concert and club-like experience,” said V-Moda CEO Val Kolton.

“This partnership is not strictly a business deal; it’s a strategic synergy that will bridge the high-quality sound, materials and design of our products with the legendary genre-changing sound expertise and commitment to excellence from Roland. Roland’s 808, 909, the contribution to the development of MIDI protocol and countless products helped to lay the foundation and forge today’s music, and together we can carry on the tradition.”

Related: V-Moda Crossfade Wireless headphone review

For Roland’s part, the instrument maker best known for changing the sound of music with its aforementioned TR-808 electronic drum machine and synth patches will gain a lifestyle brand that will help the company reach into new markets. Though Roland will become the majority stakeholder, under the terms of the agreement Kolton will retain 30 percent of the company. Details of the deal, including just how much money changed hands in the acquisition, were not disclosed.

“We’re pleased V-Moda has joined the Roland family of brands,” said Roland chief Jun-ichi Miki. “V-Moda revolutionized headphones and has pushed the envelope of personalization. Their Milano design, material research and professional DJ roots along with their loyal customers are incredible assets for Roland. It’s an exciting time for both companies, and we are eager for the talent at V-Moda and Roland to collaborate. This new team and the audience that the products are going to attract will definitely inspire the future of music.”

V-Moda was created 12 years ago, but the company made a name for itself during the rise of the Beats era, presenting an alternative kind of stylized design that focuses on modern minimalism with a robust build. The company’s M-100 headphones helped V-Moda set a new mark in the over-ear genre, offering removable plates for customization, durable construction with a near indestructible headphone band, and punchy sound that blends powerful bass with a clear and detailed upper register.

Kolton will maintain his role as V-Moda’s CEO after the transition, continuing to bring his DJ/Dance music sensibility, as well as innovative product design to the table as Roland helps the brand move into the larger global marketplace.

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