December 20, 2007 — Yamaha Corporation (Head office: Hamamatsu, Shizuoka, Japan; President: Mitsuru Umemura; hereinafter: Yamaha) has announced that it has reached a basic agreement to purchase 100% of the shares of L. Bösendorfer Klavierfabrik GmbH (Head office: Vienna, Austria; hereinafter: Bösendorfer), a premium piano manufacturer from Austrian Bank BAWAG P.S.K. Group (hereinafter: BAWAG). Today, Yamaha signed a contract with BAWAG in Vienna.
Bösendorfer was founded in 1828 and is a manufacturer of premium pianos, especially concert grands. As a symbol of Vienna’s musical culture, Bösendorfer pianos sustain the city’s legacy of unique, warm, and rich sound-creation combined with top-quality production, based on a long tradition of craftsmanship, and has many fans principally among pianists and professional musicians. After becoming a subsidiary of Kimball Piano and Organ Company, a U.S. piano manufacturer, in 1966, Bösendorfer was acquired in 2002 by the BAWAG an Austrian financial group.
Yamaha began the manufacturing of pianos in 1900 and has built a position as a full-line supplier, offering a wide range of pianos led by the top-of-the-line concert grand CFIIIS. In addition, Yamaha maintains a branch of its European subsidiary in Vienna and has nurtured close ties with the musical community in Vienna. Over the years, at the request of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, along with the decrease in the number of local instrument manufacturers, Yamaha has developed, and is continuing to manufacture, instrument groups that inherit Vienna’s sound and musical tradition, including Vienna oboes and Vienna horns in the wind instruments section.
Bösendorfer pianos, too, have a uniquely Viennese resonance, and the traditional methods of manufacturing have been preserved. In its management role, Yamaha believes that, going forward, it will be possible to support the healthy growth and development of Bösendorfer and contribute to sustaining Vienna’s musical culture and traditions for future generations.
Regarding the full acquisition of Bösendorfer shares, BAWAG indicated its intention of making the shares available to potential acquirers through off-market bidding. Although a number of companies indicated an interest in the acquisition, Yamaha was selected as the acquirer for final negotiations on November 28 and, subsequently, conducted discussions to reach agreement.
Yamaha made its decision to acquire 100% of Bösendorfer’s shares based on its judgment that the acquisition will make it possible to draw fully on the strengths and special features of both Yamaha and Bösendorfer pianos to contribute to musical culture through continuing to offer top-quality pianos to the market and significantly enhancing Yamaha’s presence in the premium piano market.