Vari-Lite, Clair Bros in Showco Deal As part of its ongoing restructuring, Vari-Lite International, Inc., has entered into a letter of agreement to sell Showco, its sound reinforcement business, to an affiliate of Clair Brothers Audio, Inc. The latter company is based in Lititz, PA.
Commenting on the deal, Vari-Lite CEO Rusty Brutsche said, "The combination of Showco and Clair Brothers will create the most impressive sound reinforcement company in the world. The decision to sell Showco to Clair Brothers was based upon the long-term benefits to Showco's customers and employees as Vari-Lite concentrates its efforts on the development, manufacture, and sale of its VARI superscript *LITE[R] automated lighting systems and continued operation of our lighting rental and production services offices in North America, Asia, and London."
The Clair Brothers deal is only the latest in a series of major changes for Vari-Lite, as it transforms itself from a big-ticket rental-only company to an operation that combines sales and rentals and is focused on all price levels in the marketplace. Recently, the company also announced the completed sale of its operations in Belgium, the Netherlands, France, and Sweden to First Events B.V., an investment company that owns Focus Showequipment B.V. in Amsterdam.
In addition, Vari-Lite just completed a big product launch at the trade show LDI, held in Las Vegas October 20-22. The launch included the new Virtuoso DX console, which brings the many features of the Virtuoso console, heretofore a rental-only item, to a product intended for sale.
Vari-Lite is traded publicly on the Nasdaq index. Its symbol is LITE.