Logitech on Thursday announced that it will be acquiring headphone-manufacturer Ultimate Ears for $34 million. The all-cash deal is expected to close later this month, but signs of the impending integration are already apparent on the Web sites of both companies (Logitech.com and Ultimateears.com).
Ultimate Ears specializes in in-ear "canal phones" for portable audio devices such as the iPod. While the company's flagship UE-10 Pro model--a set of headphones that are custom-molded to the listener's ears--cost upwards of $900, the product line includes plenty of other headphone products in the more mainstream $40-$250 range.
Prior to the Ultimate Ears acquisition, Logitech's only headphone products were PC and Bluetooth headsets. Going forward, the Ultimate Ears products--which have generally scored high marks from professional reviewers, CNET included--will gain access to Logitech's massive marketing and retail distribution resources. It's a formula that's worked for Logitech in the past: through acquisitions such as Intrigue Technologies and Slim Devices, Logitech has supersized products such as the once-obscure Harmony universal remotes and Squeezebox network audio streamers into mainstream consumer electronics success stories.