Yamaha PACD’s Athan Billias
Yamaha Corporation had a big present under its Christmas tree: Steinberg Media Technologies GmbH, a former division of Pinnacle; the company was purchased by Pinnacle in January 2003. On December 21, 2004, Yamaha announced that it had acquired 100 percent of Steinberg's common stock and U.S. sales operations, which wilL be overseen by Yamaha's U.S. sales subsidiary, for a grand total of $28.5 million.
In the mid-'90s, Yamaha began working with Steinberg by using its computer products and bundled software. In April 2004, Yamaha and Steinberg's cooperative relationship deepened with the Studio Connections initiative, a joint-development project to integrate Yamaha's hardware products with Steinberg's software developments. Future plans for the U.S. market have yet to be determined.
According to Athan Billias, director of technology products for the company's newly formed Music Production department (see “Current,” December 2004), “Yamaha Corporation of America is looking forward to the opportunity to distribute the complete line of Steinberg's cross-platform products in the U.S. market. We believe that the integration of hardware and software, not only at the technical level, but now at the business level, as well creates a unique synergy unprecedented in the industry. In the coming months, with input from Yamaha Corporation of Japan, Steinberg GmbH and the existing U.S. dealer base for Yamaha and Steinberg products, we will be finalizing our future plans for the U.S. market.”