CEO / VOXX International Corporation
“With our business we have to stay nimble, due to the nature of what it is we produce,” says Pat Lavelle, CEO of electronics manufacturer VOXX International Corporation, told NA CEO from his offices in Orlando Florida. “Electronics changes very, very quickly. It is not a product category where a specific product stays around for years.”
VOXX produces electronics in the automotive, biometric and consumer segments such as rear-seat entertainment systems, biometric sensors and loudspeakers. The products in these segments often have a 12-to-18-month lifecycle as brands continuously launch new offerings.
“We are constantly developing new product,” adds Lavelle. “There is new technology that comes through that you have to work with so you have to have a supplier base that will move quickly with you, or you have to have enough experience within the areas of manufacturing where you can work with different manufacturers and new technologies.”
VOXX listed on the American Stock Exchange ,which became NYSE American in 1987, growing through a steady stream of acquisitions to become the market leader in the mobile video category, as well as building an impressive presence in automotive security and loudspeakers. The company now has 75 patents or patents pending in the booming field of biometrics.
VOXX is an integral part of the history of the original electronics manufacturer (OEM) segment. These are manufacturers which make products for other companies which then sell them under their own brand name.
“We have been in business since 1960 and we have strong relationships with our supplier base.”
“When I took on the role in 2005, I saw an opportunity to expand our automotive business by moving more into OEM sales and then by balancing out and diversifying a bit into other areas within electronics, because within the electronics space you are always going to deal with disruptive technology and sometimes it helps and sometimes it hurts,” explains Lavelle.
Lavelle quickly realized that any shocks in the automotive segment would be devastating. VOXX needed to be in another category of products to offset any disruption of its key product segment. Lavelle guided the company into consumer electronics, first in accessories, then in high-end speakers, as the company sought to balance out its product portfolio.
“In most of the categories we are in we have either number one or number two market share,” says Lavelle. “We supply rear seat entertainment products to the aftermarket, and we are number one in that space here in US and North America. In the automotive security field, we own nine of the top ten selling brands and we are number one there.”
The company is market leader in electronic consumer product categories such as remote controls and number one in reception products such as antennas. VOXX International is also the US market leader and perhaps even in the world in premium loudspeakers.
“Because of our scale we normally have better rates with third party suppliers than any company we are acquiring,” notes Lavelle. “VOXX International also is also usually able to take over back-end processes of the acquired companies such as accounting, customer service and logistics.”
“Besides our people our inventory is probably our biggest asset.”
A major step forward for the company in 2021 was the company’s $30 million acquisition of the Japanese Onkyo Home Entertainment Company, bringing the audio brands Onkyo, Integra and Pioneer on board.
“We expect we will reach number one market share with these companies in the home audio space,” adds Lavelle. “With these three new brands we hope to double our high-end audio business over the next two to three years as well.”
At this pace Lavelle expects the company will reach $1 billion in sales by 2025.
VOXX uses its understanding of electronics manufacturing and vast economies of scale to gain efficiencies making unprofitable companies profitable and profitable companies more profitable.