New ‘Lenbrook Media Group’ Formed with Focus On Content Delivery
When this past autumn. At the time, there was much speculation about what Lenbrook had in store for this new addition to its Hi-Fi portfolio. Now in early 2024, we’re getting to see the first part of the roadmap. Prior to the recent 2024 CES convention in Las Vegas, Lenbrook announced the creation of a new business unit called Lenbrook Media Group.(the British equivalent of filing for bankruptcy) in April of 2023, it seemed to be the end of the road for the company and its controversial digital audio technology. But that all changed when The Lenbrook Group, the Canada-based owner of globally-recognized audio brands NAD Electronics, PSB Speakers, and Bluesound, stepped in and
The acquisition of MQA’s assets complemented our existing BluOS platform and supports creators in the recording studio with capturing and delivering directly and in the highest quality, their art into the homes of music lovers. Creating the Lenbrook Media Group allows us to fully capitalize on this unique position by giving it focus, and putting the right strategies, structure, and resources in place.
— Gordon Simmonds, President and CEO of The Lenbrook Group of Companies
According to the owner of the highly-regarded BluOS hi-res multi-room platform, Lenbrook Media Group will “more effectively enable the commercialization and development of Lenbrook’s content management solutions, as well as pursue new opportunities that fit Lenbrook’s vision to offer increased choice to music fans and enthusiasts for quality audio.” The language here is somewhat vague — perhaps purposefully so — as we’re left to ponder whether Lenbrook might be considering something as drastic as launching its own streaming service, or something more pragmatic, like a renewed push to get its BluOS content management platform integrated into more hardware products and services offered by partnering brands.
One thing is certain — Lenbrook Media Group will be in charge of developing and marketing SCL6, a new scalable transmission codec developed by the folks at MQA. The patent for SCL6 was purchased by Lenbrook as part of the MQA acquisition deal. Lenbrook Media Group will be led by a newly-appointed Vice-President and General Manager, Mike Jbara. Jbara was previously CEO of MQA, and is a former Warner Music executive.
Once you combine Lenbrook’s vision for advancing choice and innovation in the performance audio industry with the assembly of some of the best minds in audio hardware and software engineering, it results in substantive opportunity to empower creators, distributors, fans, and broadcasters in addition to hardware manufacturers. It is an exciting list of possibilities that we believe will benefit both the music and the specialty audio industries.
— Mike Jbara, Vice-President and General Manager of Lenbrook Media Group
We worked closely with Mike when he led MQA and were impressed by his understanding of the complete content chain from creation through playback. His excellent people skills, his deep understanding of the music industry, and his knowledge of music technology and licensing-oriented business activities, makes the leadership role at Lenbrook Media Group a perfect fit for both parties.
— Gordon Simmonds