“Devialet”. For those interested in the world of sound, the name of the French brand refers as much to products of excellence as to unaffordable prices for most. Its bestseller, the Gold Phantom, is priced at 2,590 euros each. So what a revolution to see the company offer a product “only” 299 euros. Admittedly, these are only wireless headphones, but for the first time the brand is becoming mainstream.
It had already taken a step in this direction by launching in 2018 a more affordable version of its speakers, with the Reactors (from 990 euros), but this time it goes even further by throwing itself into a market where its competitors are call Apple (mostly), Samsung, Sony or Huawei. “It was a difficult strategic choice. We were expected on wired headsets at 1,000 euros. We made the radical choice to reach out to as many people as possible “, admits the director of the company, Franck Lebouchard, who succeeded in March 2018 to Quentin Sannié, one of the co-founders of the company.
This new brand positioning is certainly not unrelated to this change at the head of the company. In the eyes of the new boss, the luxury brand image of Devialet would be almost a misunderstanding: the prices of its products would only reflect the research and development efforts made by the company (“Hundreds of thousands of hours”) and its desire to maintain its productive apparatus in France.
However, the new boss has made a shift in the company. He who went through Conforama or Gaumont Pathé, decided to introduce Devialet to a wider audience. On arrival, these products were available in 460 points of sale, established in the most prestigious places on Earth; today 1,200 stores distribute them, including FNAC and Boulanger stores in France.
Going from a niche market to the general public is not without danger, especially for a brand that does not have the notoriety of its competitors
It is also under his aegis that Devialet has increased its partnerships to offer its technologies (sound calibration algorithms). Its name is now, among other things, associated with products such as the recent Delta box from Free or the speakers from Huawei or Belkin. This licensing policy now provides 20% of its income. The company also continues to work with car manufacturers to provide them with expertise in the world of sound.
Going from a niche market to the general public is not without danger, especially for a brand that does not have the notoriety of its competitors in this price range, nor their marketing capacity. Devialet is moving forward, however, determined in this direction. It now wants to accelerate the rate of release of its products and has given itself the means to do so. In January, the company quietly raised 45 million euros to secure its acceleration.