Sivantos Group announced that it has entered into a strategic partnership and investment agreement with audibene GmbH. According to the two companies, the transaction is not subject to the approval of regulatory authorities, and the financial details will remain confidential. Sivantos reports that audibene is the largest internet portal for independent hearing care case management and hearing aid purchasing in Europe. With about 15,000 visitors on their website per day, hearing care providers can reportedly benefit from audibene’s multi-vendor platform, as it attracts new hearing aid customers and drives incremental business for hearing healthcare providers.
Founded in Berlin in 2012 by Paul Crusius and Marco Vietor, audibene specializes in delivering hearing care services to people with hearing loss. According to the announcement from Sivantos, audibene’s core focus is on first-time customers, who are on average ten years younger than the typical customer in the market. Consumers receive consultation support by experienced hearing care professionals via telephone and the audibene website, and from local, highly qualified partner hearing healthcare providers, who deliver in-office fitting and ongoing professional care.
According to Sivantos, audibene has approximately 180 employees in Germany, the Netherlands, and Switzerland, and has more than 800 partner providers. Within Sivantos, audibene remains an independent business managed from its Berlin headquarters by its founders who will be shareholders in Sivantos, according to the announcement. The company will provide support to audibene to expand its model internationally, and the current business in Germany, Netherlands, and Switzerland will not be affected.
“Our motivation is to uncover and develop innovative approaches to partner with our customers to provide hearing healthcare earlier in the patient journey,” said Roger Radke, CEO of the Sivantos Group. “The combination of Sivantos and audibene delivers a unique, value-added proposition to our business partners. With its clear focus on digital media, phone support and qualified partner network, audibene succeeded within a short time to appeal to consumers that have until now refused the traditional supply chain. This dynamic matches the future-oriented realignment of Sivantos.”
Paul Crusius and Marco Vietor will be part of the Sivantos management and will continue to lead the audibene business. “Sivantos as an entrepreneurial investor is the ideal partner for us,” they said by way of the announcement from Sivantos. “We want to develop audibene into a truly international company. Our business will benefit greatly from its worldwide distribution network and innovation leadership.”