Electrohome

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Electrohome was one of Canada's largest manufacturers of television sets (TVs) from 1949 to 1984. The company was also involved in television broadcasting.

From 1984 to 1999, Electrohome-branded TVs were produced under licence by Mitsubishi Electric, and from 1999 to the present by Jutan (distributed by Canadian distributor Citizen Electronics).

The company underwent an orderly wind-up in late 2008. In February 2010, the Electrohome brand was acquired by Bluetronics Group a division of Circus World Displays Limited (CWD).

History[edit]

Electrohome was founded in Kitchener, Ontario in 1907 as a phonograph manufacturer. Company founder Arthur Pollock founded the company after winning a coin flip with his wife. Eventually, the company branched out into other consumer goods such as records, radios, furniture, and fans.

The company began manufacturing and selling television sets in 1949, competing with companies such as Northern Electric and Canadian General Electric for a share of the Canadian market. Electrohome developed its reputation for its large heavy floor models boxed in hardwood cases.

In 1954, Carl Arthur Pollock, son of the company's founder, led Electrohome in joining the Famous Players theatre chain to launch Kitchener-Waterloo's first television station, CKCO-TV. Originally a CBC Television affiliate, it joined CTV in 1964. Electrohome assumed full control of CKCO in 1970 when broadcasting laws substantially reduced the amount of foreign ownership in Canadian media (Famous Players was controlled by Paramount Pictures).

In 1984, suffering from years of competition with Sony and other Japanese television makers, Electrohome ceased production of TV sets, and licensed the brand name to Mitsubishi Electric. Electrohome continued to assemble large-screen projection systems popular with rock stars for a number of years using components from American manufacturers such as IBM and Texas Instruments. In 1988, Electrohome purchased a second television station, CFRN-TV in Edmonton.

In 1995, Electrohome and Baton Broadcasting entered a partnership, sharing ownership of CKCO, CFRN, CFCN-TV in Calgary, CFPL-TV in London, CHWI-TV in Wheatley and CKNX-TV in Wingham. The following year, the partnership was reorganized: Baton took over full ownership of all of the stations – and with it, controlling interest in CTV. In return, Electrohome became a shareholder in Baton, which changed its name to CTV Inc. a year later.

In 1999, Electrohome switched licensees, dropping Mitsubishi Electric and allowing Canadian distributor Citizen Electronics (Jutan) to market TVs and DVD players under the Electrohome brand name.

On March 5, 2007, the Redmond Group of Companies announced the purchase of Electrohome brands effective January 1, 2008.[1] Later that month, on March 27, Synnex announced the purchase of the Redmond Group Electrohome assets. [2]

In January 2008, Electrohome announced the sale of all of its trademarks to Synnex Corporation. Electrohome now derived most of its income from its licensing, has minor stock holdings in Mechdyne/Fakespace Systems which provides visualization solutions for data analysis, and owns digital cinema firm Immersion Studios.

The company began an orderly wind-up in late 2008.[3] In February 2010, the Electrohome brand was acquired by Bluetronics Group, a division of Circus World Displays Limited (CWD). Also included in the purchase were the rights to Magnasonic, Secureguard and Citizen (Canada only) brands, amongst many others. Based in Niagara Falls, Canada, CWD also owns and operates other brands including Fluance, Nyrius, Levana, SVAT, Defender and Pure Therapy.

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