Bose Corporation, popular worldwide by its brand name ‘Bose’, was founded by Dr. Amar Gopal Bose in 1964. The privately held company is based out of Framingham, Massachusetts in United States of America and sells its products all over the world. Over eleven thousand employees work in this world-renowned company and the brand name ‘Bose’ has come to represent the best acoustic systems for customers around the globe. Bose Corporation gained worldwide fame through its ever-popular home audio and speaker systems, though it also produces quality car audio systems, professional grade sound systems and noise-cancelling headphones among other products.
The company has also conducted extensive research in car and heavy-duty truck suspension technologies and has also dabbled in the futuristic cold fusion energy production. The founder of the corporation, Amar Bose, based his company on the motto of “Better Sound through Research”, which is still followed diligently by the management. This has resulted in the implementation of many ground-breaking technologies in the company products and Bose is the proud holder of many patents in the sound acoustics category.
How it All Began
Amar Gopal Bose was born on 2nd November, 1929 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA. His father, Noni Gopal Bose, was a Bengali-speaking Hindu from India who had fled to USA in the 1920s to survive persecution by the British for his fighting for India’s freedom activities. His mother, Charlotte, was a schoolteacher and was of German-French ancestry. Amar Bose was a bright student since his early school days and displayed ample aptitude towards electronics and business from his early teens.
When he was thirteen, he started running a model train and radio repairing business from his home by putting up effective advertisements on the façade of shops his father used to visit to sell imported merchandise. When people dropped broken toys or radios there, those were collected by his friends who were drafted as co-workers for his enterprise. Thus, he was able to supplement his family income through his venture at a young age.
He graduated from Abington Senior High School, Pennsylvania and entered the eminent Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) for completion of higher studies. He passed out from the institute with the SB (Bachelor of Science) degree in Electrical Engineering during the 1950s. Amar Bose then worked for a year at the Philips Natuurkundig Laboratorium in Eindhoven, Netherlands, and then decided to spend a year in New Delhi, India, as a Fulbright scholarship student; there he also met his first wife, Prema. Subsequently, he went on to complete his doctorate (PhD) in Electrical Engineering at MIT by submitting a paper on non-linear systems under the guidance of his mentors Yuk Wing Lee and Norbert Wiener.
After completion of his studies, he joined his alma mater as assistant professor and continued to be associated with the institution all through his active life. It was during these early years of professorship when he bought a high-end speaker system for personal use and was not satisfied at all with its sound quality. He found that even high-end sound systems available at the times were unable to match the experience of a live performance.
This thought led to his extensive research towards producing a sound system that can match the original performance to the nearest possible degree in a room setting, providing similar acoustic experience as the audience sitting in a concert hall. Thus, Dr. Amar G. Bose’s endeavor took proper shape in the form of Bose Corporation, a company started in 1964 after eight years of detailed research by him in the field of psychoacoustics and audiology, the study of sound perception by humans. Such was the importance of his work that some patents of Dr. Bose are still being used by the company in its products to this day.
The Road to Success
Dr. Amar Bose was an avid scholar and researcher in his heart, along with a keen intuition for business developed from a young age. Thus, when he launched his own company, he turned towards his close circle of academic friends and mentors like Yuk Wing Lee who helped him a lot during those initial years of struggle. One of his first employees was Sherwin Greenblat, a student in his class at MIT who rose to the post of president in the company in 1985 till 2001.
Mr. Amar Bose stressed the importance of continuous research to develop new and better technologies to improve upon his products while always striving to achieve the perfect acoustic devices that can simulate actual concert or live performance sounds. The first practical result of his extensive psychoacoustic research was the model 2201 loudspeaker, which was shaped in the eighth part of a sphere.
There were 22 small mid-range speakers fitted all over its body and was designed to be placed in a room’s corner to use the walls as sound reflection panels. The design was fresh and innovative while building upon the knowledge of sound effects upon human ears and brain, the product of extensive research of Dr. Bose. But the product failed to make any significant impact on the consumers.
Dr. Bose concluded that the available knowledge of the times was imperfect, which resulted in the failure of his product. So, after conducting some ground-breaking research which resulted in many significant patented technologies in his name, Dr. Bose unveiled model 901 in 1968 which was hugely successful, catapulting Bose Corporation into popularity all through the 1970s and beyond.
- Bose emphasizes on providing top-of-the-line products to its customers and provides customized sound solutions which caters to the needs of the individual preferences and indoor ambience,
- Has focused on advertizing its brand through its association with celebrity sports personalities from Formula 1 Car Racing, National Football League (NFL), USA Skiing and Snowboarding teams among others.
- The focus has been to emphasize the high quality of its offerings like the noise-cancelling headphones being popular among the coaches and players alike of the NFL, who need to be focused on the game in spite of the high cacophony around them in the stadium.
- The management of Bose Corporation has always encouraged research in various technological fields apart from their core business category of sound – thus their patronage have provided significant advancements in such diverse fields as car and heavy-duty truck suspensions and cold fusion technology
Bose had a total revenue of over 3.8 billion dollars in 2017 and Dr. Amar Bose was ranked 271st among the richest persons in the world with a net worth of over a billion dollars. These figures provide vindication to the fact that the privately-held organization is on the right track and their brand has the premier position among the top acoustic brands in the world with vast scopes of further business expansion while remaining committed towards quality and innovative research in diverse fields.