At the 2010 InfoComm show in Las Vegas, Behringer is launching Eurocom, a new division exclusively dedicated to the systems contracting marketplace.
The venture is captained by Vice President of Installed and Commercial Sound Costa Lakoumentas, a 25-plus year veteran of the systems market with a significant background in product development, manufacturing and contracting facets of the business.
I caught up with Costa prior to the show to get his insights on what to expect from this new enterprise.
Keith Clark: What is the genesis of Eurocom?
Costa Lakoumentas: I’d been spending a lot of time in China the past few years, working on product development and manufacturing, and during that period, was introduced to Uli Behringer (Founder and Chairman of parent company the MUSIC Group). Uli explained that he wanted to expand into the installation market, but I wasn’t clear on the company’s ability to move forward. Frankly, the brand didn’t seem positioned for it.
But Uli and I stayed in touch, though, and I finally had the opportunity to visit the production facilities in China - and was blown away by what I saw. More than 3,500 employees working in 1 million square feet of production and office space, and a lot of attention to quality and detail, such as Six Sigma production processes and Kaizen Lean Manufacturing in place.
This is backed up by an in-house R & D group with about 160 engineers, an in-house UL-certified test lab, and in-house RF test chamber - about $1 million in test equipment alone. The whole place is geared toward rapid design, verification, manufacturing and delivery of product. It just so happens that the products up until now have been MI and retail oriented.
I realized that this was a true machine that could take great product definitions and engineer and build them for any level of the market, any application, with a guarantee of quality, performance and value. This is what got my attention and ultimately led me to come onboard.
KC: What segments of the installation and commercial market is Eurocom initially focused on?
CL: As we all know, it’s a pretty broad market. That said, there are two segments that we’re most focused upon right now: what we call engineered systems and specialty systems.
On the engineered side, for example, there are independent contractors who are designing and installing systems that combine vocal reinforcement and music reinforcement in live sound style applications, such as a house of worship. Or they’re providing mixed-use vocal reinforcement and playback systems at sports facilities, conference centers, meeting rooms, hotels, and so on.
On the other hand, the specialty side are systems for retail outlets, hospitality functions, bar/restaurants, that sort of thing. These two segments have been the focus of Eurocom product development effort.