IntriCon Purchases Tibbetts

Arden Hills, Minn—As announced in the May 17 HR Insider, IntriCon Corporation, formerly Resistance Technology Inc (RTI), a designer, developer, manufacturer, and distributor of miniature and micro-miniature medical and electronics products, has acquired Tibbetts Industries Inc, Camden, Me, for $4.5 million.

Tibbetts was founded in 1945 and makes magnetic telecoils and miniature electro-acoustic transducers, including receivers and microphones. The company also offers products that support technical surveillance by law enforcement and security agencies.

“Our acquisition of Tibbetts will give IntriCon access to key components that go into ear-worn communication devices used in hearing health, medical, and professional audio products such as hearing aids, and ear-worn headsets and microphones,” Mark S. Gorder, president and CEO of IntriCon, says. “Tibbetts’ microphones and receivers, coupled with IntriCon’s low-power digital signal processing and wireless technology, will allow us to create a series of ear-worn communications platforms that connect people to people and their devices.

“We look forward to bringing our more than 60 years of expertise in miniature transducer production to IntriCon,” Donald N. Sweet, president of Tibbetts, says. “Our well-established record of providing the highest quality standards in hearing aids and medical devices, along with our extensive development experience, will further strengthen IntriCon’s strategic focus.”

Tibbetts’ management will remain with IntriCon post-acquisition serving in their current roles, according to the company.

BHI Promotes Hearing Health at National Press Club

Washington, DC—A total of 89 members of the press were screened for hearing loss during a daylong event at the National Press Club on May 15 that was organized by the Better Hearing Institute (BHI), Alexandria, Va. The event was scheduled during “May is Better Hearing and Speech Month” to draw national attention to the impact of hearing loss on Baby Boomers in the workplace. The National Press Club, located in Washington, DC, just a few blocks from the White House, is the gathering place for reporters from around the world.

At the Press Club, 175 press kits were handed out to reporters, focusing on the impact of hearing loss and how people with hearing loss earn less than people with normal hearing. Sergei Kochkin, PhD, executive director of BHI and author of the study, spoke to reporters during the daylong screenings.

Contributing to the event’s success were audiologists from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), Sonus, and Towson University who conducted the audiology screenings, and Frye Electronics and ETS-Lindgren Acoustics, which supplied the equipment.

Widex Opens Second ORCA Research Facility

Vaerloese, Denmark—Widex has opened a second Office of Research in Clinical Amplification, ORCA Europe, in Stockholm, Sweden, under the direction of Karolina Smeds, PhD. The US ORCA facility is located in Lisle, Ill (near Chicago), under the direction of Francis Kuk, PhD.

“Our experiences from the activities in the US have been extremely positive,” Widex A/S Manager of Audiological Research, Carl Ludvigsen, says. “We have been trying for the last couple of years to find the right person with the right background and qualifications to run a similar enterprise in Europe. When Karolina Smeds accepted to lead the center, we decided to place it in Stockholm.”

Stars Come Out for Starkey Gala

Jane Seymour

Actress Jane Seymour was one of the many celebrity guests to attend the Starkey Hearing Foundation Gala June 23 at the St Paul RiverCentre. Full story.

ORCA Europe will conduct relevant clinical research on the technical rehabilitation of hearing-impaired people. Research projects at the new facility will be carried out partly by the laboratory in Stockholm and partly in cooperation with hearing clinics in Sweden and other countries. Modern test facilities have been established in the center, which is located in the charming old part of the Swedish capital.

A series of studies is being initiated, all aimed at exploring how hearing aid users manage with their hearing aids both in laboratory experiments and in their daily lives. The experiments will not only focus on the benefits that can be obtained with new hearing aid technology; the possible negative effects of hearing aid use will also be examined. The new center will establish a database of hearing-impaired people willing to participate in various research projects.

Smeds holds degrees from the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm and the University of Southampton.