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Harman Company Sold

Post in 'The Pellet Mill - Pellet and Multifuel Stoves' started by snowrider, Dec 5, 2007.

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  1. snowrider

    snowrider New Member

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    Sorry if this is repetative, but Hearth and Home Technologies has most recently purchased Harman. Harman is no longer an independant company.

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  2. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes, that was what I was mentioning as the 'changeover".

    Lots of threads here about it.......long story short, Harman got in over it's head with everything from too many stoves built, too much real estate....and that was that. it was not a friendly sale.
  3. FireJumper

    FireJumper New Member

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    I heard the sale went pretty smooth...
  4. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm in a tough position on this one, because while I cheer for the industry, I also cheer for my customers....the person who buys a single stove!

    All sorts of stories floating about, but it was neither friendly or smooth. Certainly there are Press Releases concerning it, but unless you know something that I don't........

    Longer story shorter, my guess (given the facts) is that they were so far in debt that the buyer was able to set all the terms, including not taking over the debt nor the real estate. Again, these are all 100% guesses, but my thought is that Harman could not go bankrupt (always a choice) because when the Real Estate and possibly other loans were personally signed for. That would mean Mr. Harman and his family would have to go broke too. A bitter pill!

    As someone used to say "Business is War", and losing....because of just one tactical mistake, can cost you your entire army (and life).

    The good news (hopefully) is that the new company is well financed (public) and will HAVE to stand behind the stoves to some degree or they will get a bad name.....while the old company, as many here have mentioned, certainly did not give excellent factory service!

    Now people might think I'm dumping on harman or pellet stoves...but I don't care! I don't want someone taking out a loan and buying something without at least knowing that something happened.... Pellet stoves often need service, parts or just some hand-holding, and the buyer (HHT, Quad) will have to change the old Harman "no dealer but your own can help you" type of situation. From a customer viewpoint, that stinks. And while I do know things from the dealer side, it is the MANUFACTURER who is first in line to be responsible. If that means a field rep to stop at the customers house, so be it! If that means making your dealer service ANY stove (for proper reimbursement), then they should do that.

    Make no mistake about it - this is a major earthquake as far as the Pellet Stove industry is concerned. It is not just "another" sale. Harman was the top dog - we could call it the "canary in the mine" warning. If they were hurting, others are/were hurting. Of course, many of the others made better business decisions, so they can weather the storm.
  5. freebird77

    freebird77 Feeling the Heat

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    Can you tell us how this will effect those of us , including myself, that have purchased a Harman stove recently, as far as warrenty and sevice might be involved?
  6. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    The new company has a good reputation for customer service - and, as mentioned above, is probably in a BETTER position to eventually service customers than the original founder. However, my guess is that it will take a while for this to all settle out and for them to get new people up to speed.

    Legally, I would assume the full warranty is in force. MANY companies in this industry, including the biggest players, have gone through the wringer a number of times and never skirted their warranty obligations. It pays them to keep the value in the brand and add to it.
  7. freebird77

    freebird77 Feeling the Heat

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    Makes sense , I guess. Thanks Craig
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