Adidas Expanding Audio Headphone Portfolio

Global fitness brand Adidas and Swedish consumer electronics manufacturer Zound Industries on Feb. 6 announced a licensing agreement for branded Adidas audio products.

Under terms of the agreement through 2024, Zound will design, develop, manufacture, market and sell audio products under the Adidas Badge of Sport and related labels.

The licensing agreement “melds Zound with one of the most iconic, reputable and well-established global brands in the world,” CEO Pernilla Ekman said in a statement.

Adidas currently markets a line of sports headphones with San Francisco-based Monster, which markets myriad audio/visual components, including HDMI cables.

The sports headphones segment within the global headphone market is showing strong growth. The global market is forecast to surpass $19 billion by 2022.

The market is being driven by mobility and increasing penetration of online streaming services, supported by the fact that online streaming generated a revenue of $6.7 billion for music industry in 2015, according to the International Federation of Phonographic Industries.

Parks Associates reported that that at the end of 2016, 23% of U.S. broadband households owned wireless earbuds and 16% owned wireless headphones.

“The audio device market is difficult to crack, but the market for wireless headphones and earbuds is likely to change substantially,” Glenn Hower, senior analyst, Parks Associates, said in a statement. “iPhone 7 and 7 Plus owners must either use a wireless set or attach an adapter to use their wired headsets. The increased friction in using wired headsets will spur a significant number of wireless headset purchases.”

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