4 April 2023
Bringing together rock’n’roll legend Marshall Amplification and audio phenomenon Zound Industries, the firm advised on this deal marking the next chapter for a decade long successful partnership.
We have advised Stockholm headquartered Zound Industries on the acquisition of Milton Keynes headquartered Marshall Amplification.
The partnership of these two companies will now create the Marshall Group, bringing together an iconic British brand synonymous with the music industry and one of Sweden's most exciting high growth companies, to build an audio tech powerhouse.
This deal builds on a long-term partnership between Zound Industries and Marshall Amplification that has lasted more than a decade and has grown through a shared passion for high-quality sound and designed-to-last products.
Since 2010, Zound Industries has been bringing the Marshall brand to a global consumer audience through its range of headphones and wireless speakers. Under the terms of the deal, Zound Industries will acquire Marshall Amplification and the Marshall family will become its largest shareholder with 24% of the newly formed Marshall Group. The deal includes all of Marshall Amplification brands and subsidiaries, including Natal Drums, Marshall Records, and Marshall Live Agency. On day one, Marshall Group revenues will be over US$360 million (last 12 months) with double-digit profitability, cementing the company’s status as a global challenger in the audio technology sector.
Commenting on the acquisition, Partner Philip Shepherd said: "This deal turns the volume up to eleven in the audio technology sector. The innovation of Zound Industries combined with the iconic Marshall brand promises to heighten the human experience and interaction with sound capability for musicians and music lovers. We're delighted to have supported Jeremy and his team at Zound on this exciting acquisition."
Senior Counsel Paul Thorpe commented: “The success that Zound Industries has achieved with the Marshall brand over recent years is the warm-up to a new British-Swedish headline act that will cement their status as a global challenger in the audio technology sector. We are excited to have advised on this acquisition and are looking forward to seeing the Marshall Group live loud!”
Jeremy de Maillard, CEO of Zound Industries (and of the new Marshall Group), comments: “Combining our strengths and unique positioning as the Marshall Group will fuel our ambition to create premium, innovative, products and experiences for musicians and music lovers around the world. Zound has proven itself as a global, fast growing, and progressive company. With the Marshall Group, we are set to accelerate our profitable growth in a 100 billion USD market.” About Taylor Wessing, Jeremy added: “Phil, Paul and the team at Taylor Wessing have been essential to supporting our growth plans and showed real passion and expertise for our industry throughout this transaction.”
KANTER advised Zound Industries on Swedish aspects of the acquisition.
The Taylor Wessing team supporting Zound Industries was led by Partner Philip Shepherd and Senior Counsel Paul Thorpe. Further support was provided by:
Commercial Technology and Data
Partner Sian Skelton and associate Matt Quezada
Senior associate Nicola Caton, associates Amy Murphy, Jack Turner and Andra Hotomega, and trainee solicitor Lauren Mountenay
Disputes and Investigations
Partner Katie Chandler
Employment, Mobility and Pensions
Partner Helen Farr and associate James Watkins
Financial Services and Competition
Partner Paolo Palmigiano and senior associate Elisabetta Rotondo
IP and Media
Partner Charles Lloyd, senior associates Xuyang Zhu and Simon Jupp and associate Lara Pentreath
Partner Kunal Vyas and senior associate Joshua Boughton
Tax and Incentives
Partner Graham Samuel-Gibbon and associate Pip Moss
Partner Mark Chan and associate Matthew Ho
About Zound Industries
Zound Industries is the powerhouse behind the Marshall, adidas and Urbanears audio electronics brands. Founded in 2008 by Konrad Bergström and seven other co-founders, Zound has carved a unique path in the audio electronics industry and championed a human perspective built around premium quality products. From concept to consumer, Zound’s world-class team creates products and experiences that represent who their consumers are as individuals and what they care about as a community. Zound has redefined headphones from an electronics product to a fashion accessory, sprinkled colour across the audio world and set a new standard for portable and home speakers. Zound has launched a wide range of iconic, award-winning products and in 2013 was awarded the ‘Super Gazelle’ as Sweden’s fastest growing company in the history of the awards.
About Marshall Amplification
Marshall’s legacy began in a small Hanwell drum shop in 1962, where Jim and Terry Marshall sought to give a bunch of then-local guitarists the sound they wanted – a sound that was harder, crunchier, and richer. The result was the JTM45, an amp that reverberated with a sound that was much heavier than anything ever heard before. In a twist of rock 'n' roll fate – the early adopting guitarists, much like the Marshall name, would go on to revolutionise music forever. Marshall amplifiers were such a fixture of the rock scene that they featured prominently in the 1984 spoof documentary This is Spinal Tap. In a famous scene from the film, guitarist Nigel Tufnel proudly showed off his Marshall stack which went up to 11, as he explained it was "one louder" than usual amplifiers. In response, Marshall set about producing models that could be cranked up to 20. In 2003, Jim Marshall received an OBE from Buckingham Palace for his services to music and charity. Upon his death in 2012, among the musicians paying tribute to the late innovator were Paul McCartney, Paul Weller, and Guns N’ Roses guitarist Slash.
by multiple authors
by multiple authors
by Angus Miln and Philip Shepherd