Siemens to sell hearing aid division; $2.67 billion deal is industry’s biggest ever

This updated version of the post published on November 7 includes additional comments about the sale of Siemens from an informed source whom I interviewed this week. My informant asked not to be named because he was not authorized by his company to speak for publication.  David H. Kirkwood, Editor, Hearing News Watch   MUNICH,…

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Siemens in the re-making: Latest update

This week, the lead item on Hearing News Watch is a post about the ongoing saga of the sale of Siemens Audiology Solutions. It is written by my blog colleague Holly Hosford-Dunn, PhD, who published it October 24 on Hearing Economics. I thought this timely report would be of interest to Hearing News Watch readers as…

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Survey finds that nearly half of U.S. teens show danger signs for hearing loss

PISCATAWAY, NJ—An alarming one out of every six American teenagers, or 17%, reports experiencing ringing, roaring, buzzing, or pain in their ears “often or all of the time” after listening to loud music or being exposed to power tools and other sources of loud noise. An additional 29%–for a total of 46%, close to half–report sometimes…

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VA awards contracts to all “Big Six” hearing aid manufacturers

By David H. Kirkwood  DENVER–The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), which is far and away America’s largest purchaser of hearing aids, has awarded contracts, effective November 1, to buy products from the U.S. divisions of all six of the world’s largest hearing aid manufacturers. Although the contracts with GN ReSound, Oticon Inc., Phonak LLC, Siemens Hearing Instruments,…

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Analyst says Phonak decision on Costco is “probably right” despite “short-term pain

By David H. Kirkwood LONDON–Since this blog first reported that Phonak LLC would start selling Brio, a new premium hearing aid model, through Costco, we have received and published dozens of comments on the issue. Many came from independent practitioners who dispense Phonak hearing aids. They expressed outrage over having to compete with a “big box”…

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Siemens plans to cut loose its hearing aid business

By David H. Kirkwood BERLIN–Siemens AG announced at a press conference here today (May 7) that it was preparing to take its hearing aid division, Siemens Audiology, public as part of a global realignment of the German-based manufacturing giant. In its announcement, Siemens said that its audiology business “has a special position within the company,”…

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Starkey takes stand against “commoditization” of hearing aids via sales to big box stores

By David H. Kirkwood The controversy over Phonak’s decision to sell hearing aids through Costco heated up last week when Starkey Hearing Technologies told its customers that the decision by Phonak and its parent, Sonova, “does not align with Starkey Hearing Technologies’ values and principles.” In an April 10 e-mail addressed “Dear Valued Customers,” Brandon…

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Mueller and Northern close their Trivia Bowl career on a high note

By David H. Kirkwood ORLANDO, FL—As reported earlier on this blog, the 25th annual Audiology Trivia Bowl, held March 29 at AudiologyNOW! 2014 in Orlando, was the last—at least the final one produced and presented by its co-creators, Gus Mueller and Jerry Northern. The popular event, which debuted in 1990 at the second annual convention…

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Manufacturers find many ways to make a big splash at AudiologyNOW!

For a HearingHealthMatters.org exclusive report on the 25th and, very possibly, final Audiology Trivia Bowl, follow this link.   By David H. Kirkwood ORLANDO–No matter how much they complain about the costs of exhibiting, the rules and restrictions imposed on them, and the scant appreciation and respect they feel they get from the American Academy of…

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Surprise at AudiologyNOW! Mueller and Northern announce it’s their final Trivia Bowl

By David H. Kirkwood ORLANDO, FL—The American Academy of Audiology (AAA) had advised convention-goers that Gus Mueller and Jerry Northern were “sure to have some tricks up their sleeves” for the 25th annual Audiology Trivia Bowl, which was held here today (Saturday, March 29) at AudiologyNOW! 2014. However, until a few days ago not even the Academy…

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