Thanks for coming down to India especially for attending the What HiFi? Show 2017, in Mumbai. We hope that your stay in Mumbai was comfortable and that your overall experience in Mumbai was great. We would like to ask you a few questions so that we can publish your interview on our site, thank you!
Pulastya Dave(PD): A little bit of a background about yourself and how you got into the world of Audio?
Dan Poulton(DP): I have always been fascinated with Music and loved playing with HiFi Equipment. Since the age of 9, I was playing my dad’s vinyls on his hifi set-up and during my teenage years kept spending my allowances on buying new albums on Vinyl or CD format along with buying audio equipment. In order to keep my audio hobby going, I soon started working at a local shop selling Hi-Fi Audio equipment. Subsequently, I studied Philosophy at the university post which I continued to work in retail stores for a good 9 years. My first job with a Hi-Fi Audio Manufacturer was at Cambridge Audio where I was looking after the Export Sales for Europe
PD: How long have you been with Naim Audio and what has been your role within the organisation?
DP: I joined Naim Audio about 3 years back, with my designation being in charge of Export Sales – Asia Pacific. Just recently, I have been made Director – Head of Export Sales.
PD: What is it about Naim Audio Company and its products that has Audiophiles/Music Enthusiasts talk about them so passionately? Essentially, what is it that makes Naim Audio tick?
DP: Well it’s what we call the sound of magic! Naim Audio has always been known to have its very own distinctive sound, which has made a very loyal, passionate and dynamic bunch of people fans for life. We are known for our phenomenal attention to detail and we do not compromise on the quality front, be it the components or the people who work with us, that to be honest has been the foundation of Naim Audio right from its inception. Our company founder, Mr. Julian Vereker (MBE) believed in these principles and ensured that Naim Audio always followed the same, which still holds true even today.
As to what makes Naim Audio tick, clearly the pursuit of reducing the noise floor, ensures that the PRAT (Pace, Rhythm and Timing) of the music played immediately makes an emotional connect with the listener. This has been our very clear sonic theme which reflects in a very addictive sound right from our first product onto the current range of products. We have ensured that the sonic signature remains the same, through an evolution achieved by making use of better components that we can find based on our ongoing research on the same. Hence, we are very proud to state that we are a company that believes in continuity, not only of the sound but also of the people who work with us. Due to this we are able to maintain the Naim Audio sound and philosophy in every product that bears the Naim Audio logo on it.
PD: We have seen that Naim Audio in the recent past has taken some bold decisions and launched a new line of products in the form of the Statement, Muso / Muso QB and now followed that design language in the new Uniti line up, what is the thought process of doing so whilst continuing to have the classic line up side by side as well?
DP: As stated earlier, Naim Audio believes in its core values but at the same time is also interested in new technologies and how they can be incorporated in order for Naim Audio to evolve and simultaneously innovate. Our flagship product ‘The Statement’ is testimony to this approach, which showcases our core values and philosophy at the same time showcasing innovation through use of newer technologies. We also very much relish the opportunity to reach out to a younger audience via our new range of products (Muso/Muso QB) and are following up the same approach with our new Uniti series of products. Having said that we also continue to keep our core range of products via the classic line upto date as the classic line is the reason why Naim Audio is famous in the first place!
Having such an approach is very important to us as a product such as the Muso/Muso QB opens the door to us acquiring new members into the Naim Audio family, which in turn we expect to mature and subsequently gravitate towards the classic line in the future.
PD: What can we look forward to in the next couple of years as far as Naim Audio’s vision?
DP: Naim Audio’s vision remains as ever to grow the market, reach out to newer listeners at varying age demographics and continue to do what we have been doing for all these years. We are also very excited to use the technology available to innovate and go further in our pursuit as the keepers of good sound. The Naim Audio identity is very important to us, which we do not intend to lose.
PD: What do you see the Hifi Audio market going globally in the next 5 years?
DP: We are very positive of the fact that the HiFi Audio market is growing steadily and all that we intend to do is continuously nurture it with our ever expanding high quality product range. The resurgence of the two channel market, the world over is very reassuring and we intend to maximise our potential for nurturing it in newer markets with new buyers. We are also relying hugely on multi zone audiophile quality audio.
PD: What is your current understanding of the Indian HiFi market and what would you like to see happen to it in the next 5 years?
DP: Since this has been my first visit to India and specifically in Mumbai, I will need time to understand the workings of the market here with an aim to ensure that I can increase our presence and create awareness of our brand as much as possible, in association with our distributor(M/s. Innovative Information Technology)
PD: Any specific product range that you would like the distributor in India to promote in a big way?
DP: Ideally the entire range is what we as Naim Audio would love to be promoted as much as possible, but yes specifically if we can get access to new listeners via our Muso, Muso QB and Uniti Series of products, then I think we would have achieved a very good result. Basically, multizone audio of audiophile quality is what we would really love to promote in a big way, as that creates our presence into the niche Indian HiFi Audio market. For doing so we would also like our distributor to increase the marketing levels and create the Naim Audio brand awareness on a larger scale. We are already seeing some changes to that effect with having HifiHunt.Com as an able partner to assist our distributor in doing so for which I am genuinely pleased. Keep up the good work!
PD: In general, the after sales service is a big issue with electronics in India. How does Naim Audio look at this aspect?
DP: Naim Audio is extremely serious about providing after sales service to the very best of our abilities and I assure you that we are very well placed to do so. We have the ability to service and maintain any product that was manufactured by Naim Audio over the years and are extremely proud to state that many of our clients have been using their Naim Audio products continuously for all these years!
With regard to having a service set-up for India, we are already working out an arrangement along with our distributor, so that we can have the facility up and running as soon as possible. I will share the exact details once the systems are in place.
PD: Based on your first hand experience at the What HiFi? Show, what did you learn from the same and what would you like to see improve in such a show format?
DP: Overall, the show was very good. I noticed a lot of people who came were with their families which is always a good sign. Some families represented 2 to 3 generations which is also a very good sign as a family that listens to music together is more often than not a happy one. My only advise to the organisers would be to broaden the appeal so that we see more visitors for their future shows. A bit of fine tuning and making the experience better would get the desired results.
We thank Dan for being available for our interview and being very approachable. We hope to meet him in future as well and wish him the very best in his endeavors.