1 year ago

Day 6 - IFA International

  • Text
  • Products
  • Berlin
  • Appliances
  • Consumer
  • September
  • European
  • Washing
  • Panasonic
  • Sennheiser
  • Electronics

Exclusive Interview

Exclusive Interview Laurent Abadie Laurent Abadie was appointed Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Panasonic Europe Limited on 1 April 2009. Mr. Abadie joined Panasonic France as Managing Director in 2004. The following year he was appointed Chief Executive Officer and, on 1st April 2008, Executive Officer within the Matsushita Electric Industrial Co Ltd. Group – as from October 2008 being known only under its brand name of Panasonic. Under the guidance of Mr. Abadie, Panasonic has led the French digital camera market since the first quarter of 2007 with its Lumix range. Panasonic has also climbed from fifth to second place in the French plasma screen market under his leadership. About Panasonic Panasonic Corporation is a worldwide leader in the development and manufacture of electronic products in three business fields – consumer, components and devices, and solutions. Based in Osaka, Japan, the company recorded consolidated net sales of about 72bn euros for the year ended 31 March, 2012. Panasonic’s stock is listed on the Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya and New York (NYSE:PC) Stock Exchanges. The company has the vision of becoming the No1 Green Innovation Company in the electronics industry by the 100th year since its founding in 2018. 16 We are now uniquely positioned to offer such a range of both smart products and eco technologies to the customer. We believe every single detail in the home, the town or city has to make a difference, from the smallest product such as an LED light bulb that last 40,000 hours, to larger, more obvious energyrelated products such as solar panels, heat pumps and large household energy storage batteries. IFA 2012 sees us advance into home appliances. These include induction hobs, electric ovens, dish washers, but also smaller and very stylish kitchen products such as kettles, toasters and coffee makers. At the same time, our existing products are getting more energy efficient as we introduce the world’s first A+++ sideby-side no-frost refrigerator and a super efficient A -60% heat pump dryer. “This month (September), the first phase of work starts at Fujisawa, our Smart Sustainable Town in Japan” Connectivity Is the Key Panasonic unveils its vision of connectivity and smart towns Panasonic has its largest-ever stand at IFA this year with more than 6000 square metres, as it unveils comprehensive home appliances and beauty products to accompany its well-known consumer electronics products. Laurent Abadie, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman at Panasonic Europe, talks about the current connectivity offering and his plans to connect all Panasonic products together in smart homes and smart towns in the future. In the TV market, how are you coping with strong competition and lower and lower margins? In July 2012, we announced that Panasonic had returned to the black and our new line-up of SmartVIERA TVs have been received well across Europe. Since the introduction of our new LED SmartVIERA TVs in March 2012, our Euro 5 market share for LED TVs above 37- inch has nearly doubled to 10.25% in quantity. At the same time, we continue to develop screen technologies. At IFA, we show B2B screen technologies such as the world’s largest 145-inch super high definition 8K4K (7680 x 4320) screen, which is four times the resolution of a full HD screen, and also the world’s largest glassless 3D screen. We see lots of interest in the professional market for showrooms, museums and on the broadcast side for such new screen technologies. We believe that the TV screen – because it is a Laurent Abadie Chief Executive Officer and Chairman at Panasonic Europe connected TV – will also display all information from our smart devices such as the energy being created by the solar panels. In such a competitive and diverse market as Europe, how can you bring all of these products together in one home or one town? This month (September), the first phase of work starts at Fujisawa, our Smart Sustainable Town in Japan. This community of 1000 homes is a blueprint of what can be achieved. These projects are getting closer to Europe with initiatives such as the Skolkovo project in Russia. We are delighted to be involved in scoping the products needed to make Skolkovo a success for the 31,000 residents who will live there. In Europe, is there any other ‘Smart City’ project which Panasonic is participating in? We are continuing to pursue opportunities to engage in smart cities in Europe and believe that Fujisawa and Skolkovo will deliver momentum in this area. We are combining as many of our smart and ecofriendly products into small, medium and large projects across Europe as possible because even one home can make a big difference to the environment. Hall 5.2 Stand 101

Exclusive Interview VOLKER BARTELS Volker Bartels has been President of Manufacturing and Logistics at Sennheiser Electronic since January 2007. He also serves as Production Director and is Speaker of the company’s Executive Management Board. SENNHEISER Founded in Germany in 1945, Sennheiser makes consumer and professional audio equipment, including headphones, aviation and office headsets, microphones and microphone systems. Sennheiser has factories in Germany, Ireland and the US, and R&D offices in the US and Singapore. SENNHEISER Headsets for the iPhone Sennheiser has launched eight new headsets for the iPhone, the iPad and other Apple products at this year’s IFA. Based on headphones from the successful Portable Entertainment series, the headsets combine top-quality sound with a convenient handsfree system. While the microphone and control unit are integrated into the cable and allow the Apple product to be controlled at the push of a button or by voice commands, the headsets support the useful Apple feature by which music is paused when a phone rings. Other features include ideal ear sleeve sizes for an optimum fit; high isolation against environmental noise; excellent bass response; natural sound reproduction and high dynamics; and an integrated in-line microphone with convenient phone answer/end button that allows users to switch from rich mobile music to crystal-clear mobile phone calls with just one touch. Sennheiser iPhone Headphones Sound Foundations Sennheiser mixes quality and style to amplify headphone sales As a premium manufacturer of microphones and headphones, Sennheiser has forged its brand — and record profits — around peerless quality. At IFA, Sennheiser has released a range of products that also appeal to lifestyle trends. Sennheiser Spokesperson, Volker Bartels, tells IFA International about the state-of-the-art headphones that turn consumers into DJs… [ Interview by Richard Barnes ] Last year was very successful for Sennheiser. We finished with sales of euro 531m [growth of 13.5%], while profits after tax almost doubled. We’re very happy that the whole portfolio contributed to the result — both the professional business with wireless microphones, as well as the consumer business, which significantly grew and now accounts for roughly 48% of total sales. Headphones alone are about 33% of our consumer business. Obviously, this growth is due to the continued trend towards large lifestyle headphones. People tend to wear the headphones openly in order to show off the design and their professionalism. The way people are listening to music is changing. How is Sennheiser reacting to that? “The Sennheiser brand is one of our biggest assets” Wearing headphones and listening to music is more and more of a fashion statement. People use and wear headphones in order to express themselves. Sennheiser, as a manufacturer of consumer and professional headphones, supports that trend by providing products that not only look good but also have a very, very good sound. That’s what Sennheiser has been famous for, for many years. What are the star Sennheiser products at IFA? We have introduced the new Momentum headphones, which is a lifestyle product with a very interesting design. It’s made of natural materials and has leather ear pads. It’s very stylish and, of course, it produces an excellent sound. The Momentum is a one-of-a-kind headphone — like the people who wear and use it. It reflects the user’s personality and individualism. We are also introducing the new Amperia, which brings the Sennheiser DJ sound to the streets. And we are also launching the HD 800, which is a new high-end product. What do you expect your results to look like for 2012? The year so far has been very successful — and looks set to continue on that successful path throughout the Christmas season. Volker Bartels Sennheiser Spokesperson How important has Sennheiser’s brand equity been in your growth and development? The Sennheiser brand is one of our biggest assets and it’s done a lot for our credibility and the trust placed in us by our customers. With Sennheiser products, you have performance, you have the Sennheiser sound, you have the product and you have the Sennheiser service. All that together helps us to remain successful. Hall 3.2 Stand 127 IFA International • Wednesday 5 th September 2012 17

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