Amassing a Dedicated Team of Industry Veterans, Planar Announces its Strategy to Offer Innovative and Exclusive Products to the High-End Home Theater Channel
BEAVERTON, Ore., August 10 , 2006 - Combining its 23 -year heritage in delivering top -quality display products and unparalleled customer service with a dedicated team of projection and home theater industry veterans, Planar Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: PLNR), a worldwide leader in specialty display solutions, announced its expansion into the specialty home theater market. Accompanying this announcement is Planar's introduction of its first home theater product, the Planar Xscreen.
Recently, Planar announced new strategic initiatives aimed at increasing long -term shareholder value through expanding and enhancing top -line revenue growth and profitability over time. To this end, Planar has hired a team of projection and home theater industry veterans to develop and market innovative and exclusive products to the worldwide specialty home theater channel and its customers. Planar's new Home Theater business unit is an integral part of the company's strategy to provide high -value solutions spanning multiple specialty display markets. Specifically, the company's Home Theater initiative addresses an identified opportunity to establish Planar as the top display choice of home theater industry professionals and theater enthusiasts who are looking for superior performance, design and support in a comprehensive line of display products. Unlike commodity products and brands found at large retail outlets worldwide, Planar's specialty home theater products will be available exclusively through specialty home theater distributors and dealers worldwide, who add value with thorough industry knowledge and installation capabilities.
The Planar Home Theater business unit is headed by Scott Hix, who assumes the role of vice president and general manager after being appointed Planar's vice president of business development earlier this year. Replacing Hix as Planar's VP of business development is Brad Gleeson, bringing more than 20 years of flat -panel experience to Planar's new strategic focus and the position. Rounding out the latest executive -level additions to the specialty home theater team is Jim Davis as global head of sales for Planar's Home Theater unit, who has spent more than 20 years in the consumer electronics industry and the past five years in the specialty home theater market.
"We are excited about our ability to deliver best -in -class home theater offerings based on Planar's disciplined specialty display channel approach, engineering innovation and the home theater team's preceding reputation in this industry," said Hix. "Planar's displays perform in mission -critical applications and are trusted in medical, industrial and commercial markets. Planar plans to leverage that display engineering for demanding performance to its specialty home theater products."
According to Hix, Planar's home theater product lines will initially include the ambient -light -rejection Planar Xscreen that greatly enhances front -projection performance in rooms with windows and light, multiple sizes of high -definition LCD flat -panel displays, which will take a cue from Planar's deep history and exceptional track record in flat -panel displays, and a comprehensive line -up of high -performance home theater projectors, which are new to Planar, but not to the dedicated specialty home theater team. Planar's Home Theater products are backed by the company's industry -leading Customer First™ advanced exchange warranties (available in the US only). Hix expects to announce additional home theater products later this quarter.
Planar Home Theater Introduces Planar Xscreen
As evidence of the new home theater team's innovative strategic focus, Planar also announced today the initiative's first product, the Planar Xscreen, a dramatic evolution from the traditional home theater screen. Planar Xscreen is a best -in -class, front -projection screen system that overcomes the most common problems associated with home cinema systems found outside of dedicated theaters by reducing reflected light from windows or lamps that degrades picture quality -Planar Xscreen delivers exceptional large -screen cinema experiences in nearly any room in the home. Paired with a front projector, the Xscreen delivers the industry's highest -quality picture in 60 -inch, 70 -inch, 80 -inch and 100 -inch diagonal viewing sizes. Furthermore, Planar Xscreen's black, high -gloss industrial frame design takes cues from sleek plasma displays, providing design enthusiasts with a solution that complements their décor.
"Nearly every study in the past five years indicates that a rapidly growing number of consumers want bigger, impressive video displays in their home, but they either can't afford 60 -inch or larger flat -TVs or they are disappointed with the challenges of front projection in highly lit rooms," said Tamaryn Pratt, principal, Quixel Research Home Theater Display Report. "The Planar Xscreen is a unique product that allows front projection to be used in virtually every type of room like other flat -panel TV technology, but in much larger sizes and at a price that is thousands of dollars less than other offerings."
Planar Xscreen uses patented Daytime Film Technology™ to reject ambient light and deliver bright, high -contrast images from front projectors in any room -regardless of light conditions. The combination of a 4mm layer of hardened glass beneath the screen provides a flat screen surface that creates an unsurpassed image experience from front projectors with twice the brightness and twice the contrast of traditional screens. The result is a higher -quality image with beautiful color, rich contrast and razor -sharp images in nearly any lighting environment.
For further ease -of -installation, the Planar Xscreen Plus transforms the screen's role in a home theater solution by making it the hub for connectivity and processing of all video and audio components, which can be controlled by a single, universal remote. The Planar Xscreen Plus reduces clutter because cables from each source no longer have to run to the projector. Planar's Xscreen Plus remote is as easy to use as any traditional TV remote.
"Planar has delivered a solution that makes the screen as important as the projector or sound system in the home theater," Hix said. "Until now, the only option for a dedicated home theater involved passive screens used in dedicated, dark rooms. Planar Xscreen enhances any projector's image, so that users can enjoy the theater experience day and night, in a dedicated room or in the family room."
The Planar Xscreen and Planar Xscreen Plus are available now through specialty home theater partners worldwide. For more information, please visit www.PlanarHomeTheater.com
Planar Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:PLNR) is a leading provider of valued -added display hardware and software for a variety of specialty display markets worldwide. Hospitals, shopping centers, banks, businesses, and other discriminating consumers depend on Planar to provide unique display -based solutions to exacting requirements leveraging its operational excellence, technical innovation, and go -to -market capabilities. Founded in 1983, Planar is headquartered in Oregon, USA, with offices, manufacturing partners, and customers worldwide. For more information, visit www.planar.com
Planar Systems, Inc.
Planar Systems, Inc.