Audio Mixing Specialist Audiotonix Sells to PAI Partners, Targets Continued Expansions and Acquisitions

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Audiotonix has sold to PAI Partners. Photo Credit: Natalie Parham

French investment house Ardian has officially unveiled a deal to sell a majority interest in U.K.-based audio mixing company Audiotonix.

Ardian representatives reached out today with word of the sale agreement, which the investment house and Paris-headquartered private equity firm PAI Partners just recently finalized. For reference, Audiotonix has north of 750 employees and describes itself specifically as “a global market leader in the design, engineering and manufacture of professional audio mixing consoles and ancillary products.”

Behind that billing, the business’s brands include but aren’t limited to Allen & Heath, Calrec, and DiGiCo. And in the interest of brevity, Ardian officially purchased a majority stake in Audiotonix from Astorg in December of 2019, leaving the latter entity aboard as a minority owner.

During the past four years and change, Ardian-owned Audiotonix has closed five acquisition deals “to further diversify and strengthen its portfolio,” per the involved parties, besides leaning into product and software development.

Moving beyond these pertinent background details, Ardian itself is now expected to hold a minority stake in Audiotonix as part of the pact with PAI Partners.  

Looking ahead to its future as a division of PAI, Audiotonix, which says its products have been used on tours from Coldplay and U2, is poised to pursue strategic acquisitions and zero in on “secular trends towards the experience economy.”

Building on these points in a statement, Audiotonix CEO (and former longtime DiGiCo exec) James Gordon emphasized PAI’s perceived ability to help take his company “to the next level.”

“I would like to thank Ardian for the confidence and solid support of Audiotonix, the management team and our staff,” Gordon said in part. “The team invested alongside us just as the Covid lockdown began, and from our first meeting were aligned with us, making sure Audiotonix emerged in a stronger position than before. … With PAI, it is clear this is a team and partner we can take Audiotonix to the next level with, while preserving the passion and energy that have made the group the success it has become in our industry.”

And in joint remarks of their own, PAI partners Colm O’Sullivan and Neil McIlroy communicated in part: “Audiotonix is well placed to benefit from positive structural tailwinds in the experience economy and diverse professional audio environments – whether in live entertainment, installed professional audio, music or sports. We look forward to working with the team as the group continues to deliver market-leading, professional products, defining audio experiences worldwide.”

Worth mentioning in conclusion is that Samsung subsidiary Harman’s professional solutions unit in December of 2023 formally closed its acquisition of FLUX Software Engineering.