HARMAN International, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. focused on connected technologies for automotive, consumer and enterprise markets, has announced the opening of its first Experience Store in Europe.
Located at Sendlinger Straße 46, in the heart of Munich’s popular central retail shopping district, the new location is designed to serve as a showcase for HARMAN’s award-winning audio solutions across all consumer and automotive categories. It highlights how the company’s heritage of craftsmanship merges with innovation and cutting edge technology in both the store design and the products on display.
“Our first HARMAN store in Europe transcends simple retail to a memorable visual and auditory experience centre. It is a dynamic showcase for our family of brands including JBL, Harman Kardon and AKG, and it will feature select cars from our automaker partners that include our in-dash technologies and sound systems. The store will truly be a place where speed meets sound, combining our automotive audio and consumer audio heritage in one place. Through it, we will continue to transform how consumers interact with our audio products and brands,” said Michael Mauser, President, Lifestyle Audio at HARMAN.
“HARMAN is a house of world-renowned audio brands, and this new space is in many ways a manifestation of that house. Flagship stores tell our story and enable us to take centre stage to connect directly with consumers. This is an important step in the development and growth of our brands across Europe and we are delighted to welcome consumers to our Munich Experience Store,” said Ralph Santana, Chief Marketing Officer at HARMAN.
A dynamic showcase
The space is designed to be entirely transformed for various events including lectures, small concerts, parties, etc. – fixtures can be moved, digital displays can be taken over, colour-changing LEDs in the ceiling can wash the space in colours to adapt to every need and mood.
It will feature award-winning consumer products from JBL, Harman Kardon and AKG including headphones, portable speakers, soundbars, voice controlled speakers and much more. HARMAN’s automotive audio business will also feature in the store with a rotating selection of vehicles equipped with state-of-the-art sound systems from its portfolio of automotive audio brands including Harman Kardon, JBL, Bang & Olufsen, Bowers & Wilkins.
Pushing the experiential dimension even further, the Munich Experience Store will enable customers to interact not only with HARMAN’s products, but also with regular musical events, celebrity appearances and car launches in collaboration with automakers, amongst the activities. An additional Luxury Audio Studio is also set to open in an adjacent space later this year. In the Luxury Audio Studio, audio enthusiasts will be able to enjoy and explore products from HARMAN’s exclusive luxury brands like Lexicon, Mark Levinson, and Revel plus it will include a deluxe cinema featuring Dolby Atmos.
A design showstopper
The first of its kind in Europe, the Experience Store in Munich is intended to bring together speed and sound in a unique way. Across a 33.5-metre glass façade lies a modern, dynamic environment that pays homage to Germany’s rich automotive culture and legendary precision. Gensler Architects, whose portfolio includes Facebook’s California headquarters, Cadillac House in New York, and the stunning Shanghai Tower, designed the interior as the visualisation of a sound wave that guides consumers from the front to the back of the store, offering a cadenced retail experience that revolves around the visualisation and emotion of a sound wave articulated through both form and light.
A fitting location
Since opening its first flagship store in Shanghai in 2010, HARMAN has added such cosmopolitan locations as Tokyo and New York City. With its deep automotive roots, Munich was a natural choice for the first European Experience Store. The very design of the store’s interior evokes Germany’s powerful automotive culture and identity.
Becoming part of the local community
As part of the opening, HARMAN will also make a commitment to the local community. Every holiday season, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to Munich-based youth athletic organisations. To kick off the campaign, HARMAN donated 25,000 EUR to the International Hockey Federation on the occasion of the store opening. The donation was handed over to German National Team Coach Marco Sturm and some key players from the silver-medal winning German Olympic championship team during an evening ceremony at the store.
The Munich flagship store is open to the public starting 26 September and every Monday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.