market share in Japan with formation of new subsidiary Business Editors FRANKFURT, Germany--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 27, 1997--In an effort to significantly increase its share of the grand piano market in Japan, Steinway Musical Instruments Inc. (NYSE:LVB) announced an aggressive plan to form a Japanese subsidiary placing the former president of Yamaha Corp. of America, Tatsuya (Peter) Suzuki, at its helm. At a press conference held in conjunction with the International Music Fair in Frankfurt, Germany, Bruce A. Stevens, president of Steinway & Sons Worldwide stated that the new subsidiary, Steinway & Sons Japan Ltd. will be headquartered in Tokyo and will begin operations as of March 1, 1997. Suzuki, in the post of president, will oversee all future importing and wholesale operations for Steinway & Sons Hamburg made pianos marketed in Japan. Commenting on today's announcement, Stevens stated that, "We are very excited regarding the start-up of this new marketing and distribution company in Japan. And while Japan is currently the largest export market for Steinway & Sons, the establishment of this new marketing subsidiary, working together with a nationwide network of quality dealers, will lead to further substantial growth of Steinway piano sales in the world's second largest grand piano market. Suzuki's long and highly respected career in the music industry both in Japan and America along with his comprehensive knowledge of the Japanese market will provide Steinway & Sons Japan Ltd. with solid leadership upon which to build this steady expansion of our consumer sales in Japan." Previously, Steinway & Sons was represented exclusively in Japan by H. Matsuo Musical Instruments Co. Ltd. which will continue as the Steinway & Sons retailer in Kanto and Kansai, the most populous regions in Japan, which include the cities of Tokyo, Osaka, Kobe and Kyoto. In a second, related announcement, Steinway & Sons and H. Matsuo Musical Instruments Co. Ltd. said they will set up a joint venture, Steinway Services Co., which will be responsible for the after sales services and technical work for Steinway & Sons pianos and technical training for technicians in Japan. Haruki Matsuo, president of H. Matsuo Musical Instruments Co. Ltd. will head this new company. Continuing his comments, Bruce Stevens stated that "It has been through the efforts of Haruki Matsuo and H. Matsuo Musical Instruments Co. Ltd. that Steinway & Sons is the premiere brand at all Japanese concert halls and institutions. Matsuo has sold more than 1,700 concert grands since becoming a Steinway dealer, 1,000 of which were sold within the past 15 years. We are now committed to achieving a similarly strong position among private piano enthusiasts and musicians throughout Japan with the establishment of Steinway & Sons Japan Ltd. and Steinway Services Co." Steinway Musical Instruments Inc. is one of the world's largest manufacuturers of musical instruments with annual revenue exceeding $250 million. Its Steinway & Sons subsidiary is the maker of the world's most famous pianos and choice of the overwhelming majority of concert artists. Steinway pianos are handcrafted at facilities in New York and Hamburg, Germany. Its Selmer subsidiary is a leading manufacturer of orchestral and band instruments with brand names such as Selmer, Vincent Bach, Ludwig, Musser, Glaesel and Emerson.
STEINWAY ANNOUNCES PLAN TO EXPAND CONSUMER