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Ketchum, Idaho and Santa Cruz, Calif. (January 19, 2006) â€“ Smith Optics and Plantronics, Inc. (NYSE: PLT) today announced that they will collaborate to develop new Smith-branded action sports gear that incorporate wireless audio communication and entertainment technology. The new venture combines over 80 years of product excellence and leadership in the action sports, mobile and communications markets.
â€œWe have created an ideal collaboration between Smith and Plantronicsâ€, said Blair Clark, Smith Optics Senior Vice President of Marketing and Sales. â€œThe product development teams dedicated to this effort have tremendous experience and ideas in marrying fashion and technology. Our plan is to combine the same performance, style and innovation for this program that we provide in the goggle and sunglass businesses, while revolutionizing the integration of fashion and technology,â€ Clark said.
â€œPlantronics is an established leader in BluetoothÂ® communication devices and has proven that audio technology can easily fit into active lifestyles, and can do so with a sense of fashion,â€ said Renee Niemi, vice president of Mobile and Entertainment at Plantronics. â€œCollaborating with Smith will accelerate this evolution and deliver action sports gear that combine style, comfort and great wireless sound.â€
Smith and Plantronics will jointly develop helmets, goggles, eyewear and other products that incorporate wireless technology. The helmets will include audio systems compatible with MP3 players, such as Apple iPods, and MP3-enabled cell phones, advanced ventialation systems, a crash replacement program, and an unprecedented lifetime warranty.
â€œWe are the market leader in goggles in the snowsports business and we have been innovating the product category for over 40 years,â€ said Eric Carlson, Director of Product and Merchandising. â€œThe resources, focus and market knowledge that Plantronics has will allow us to evolve that heritage into the expanding wearable technology market. What we’re seeing now is that wearable technology is advanced enough to provide unrestricted design opportunities while being cost-effective. We can provide hands-free connection for all of our athletes and weekend warriors alike,â€ Carlson continued.
About Smith Optics
Based in Sun Valley, Idaho, with a Southern California office located in San Clemente, Smith Optics, Inc. was founded in 1965 with the creation of the first goggle featuring a sealed thermal lens and breathable vent foam. Today, Smith is as well known for its diverse line of fashion and performance sunglasses as it is for its goggles. From Smith’s distortion-free Tapered Lens Technology to the versatility of the Slider Series, with its patented, interchangeable lens system, the devotion to excellence, innovation and style is what has made Smith goggles and sunglasses the choice of action-sport athletes worldwide. Smith products are sold in more than 50 countries through sporting goods and specialty stores. For more information visit www.smithoptics.com <http://www.smithoptics.com/> .
In 1969, a Plantronics headset carried the historic first words from the moon: â€œThat’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.â€ Since then, we’ve become the headset of choice for mission-critical applications such as air traffic control, 911 dispatch, and the New York Stock Exchange. Today, this history of Sound Innovationâ„¢ is the basis for every product we build for the office, contact center, personal mobile, entertainment and residential markets. The Plantronics family of brands includes Plantronics, Altec Lansing, Clarity, and Volume Logic. For more information, go to www.plantronics.com or call (800) 544-4660.
Altec Lansing, Clarity, GameCom, Plantronics, the logo design, Plantronics Sound Innovation and Volume Logic are trademarks or registered trademarks of Plantronics, Inc. The Bluetooth name and the Bluetooth trademarks are owned by Bluetooth SIG, Inc. and are used by Plantronics, Inc. under license. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.