Prior to June 2017, Marcelle John (H or DJ HTown) Marcelino was approached by a friend – Marcus Strong from Seattle in the US – who inquired about “getting earphones made in China and slapping a logo on them.”
“Unfortunately, none of the manufacturers can get the sound delivery and quality that I wanted. So I ended up venturing to look for the right parts and suppliers to assemble them myself,” recalled DJ HTown.
And so in June 2017, H-Audio Technologies came into being.
There are numerous Filipino tech companies, though tech – per se – is not a field many Filipinos (generally speaking) often venture into. But DJ HTown said this was something he gravitated towards.
“I’ve been in the music business for over two decades as a producer, radio broadcaster, DJ, host, concert promoter, program director, sound engineer, etc. so it was not too far off that I saw an opportunity to bring great quality audio products without having to pay top dollars for it,” he said.
H-Audio Technologies is now also boosted by the presence of Earl Chua, COO; and Patrick Orante, Communications Manager.
Looking back, DJ HTown said he never thought he’d be in this line of business.
“Not in a million years. Being that I was programming radio stations for 17years, I always thought that I’d be working in the radio broadcasting business,” he said.
In fact, he was offered a job at Spotify in Sweden for a music programmer position. “Fortunately, after a series of different interviews with their HR and executives, (the deal didn’t push through) because they said I was overqualified. They offered me a management role, but I went for a harder route instead because I needed the challenge. That’s when H-Audio Technologies started.”
That this is a profitable business is a given.
“If you do it right, build solid relationships, and have goals (global goals), it is a very profitable business,” DJ HTown.
Of course, it helps that their products have something different from those already available in the market.
Must-check include: the Replay 80s Throwback Headphone, Limited Edition PH3, and H3 Ultra Bass Earbuds.
As FYI: The important parts like the chipsets are from a US company called Qualcomm. Other parts like the aluminum and metals are from Japan or Europe, and assembly is done in China. Packaging is done in the Philippines.
“We focus a lot on the price points, quality, service, and most especially the relationship with our clients. Most companies that offer the same OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturing) and ODM (Original Design Manufacturing) in China will just give you the products that you ask for and send them to you. We actually care about your business. We help you with marketing, distribution, branding, and referrals. Because we want you to succeed further. And whether you decide to come back to do more business with us or not, we at least made sure that you got 100x more than what you paid for as a client. Consumer-wise, we always make sure that you get the best quality product at about half the price that the other bigger companies offer,” he said.
In an industry dominated by Western brands, there remain challenges for a Filipino company like H-Audio Technologies.
“Marketing, sales, finance, communications, everything,” DJ HTown laughed. “Just like every entrepreneur, most of us that is, all start with a dream. Then all the sudden you have to really put in the time to make every aspect of your business truly grow. I’m guessing facing these challenges only means that I find better people more suitable and smarter than me to fill each role. The true answer would be optimism and passion. We don’t just take in anyone to fill a role. We find the people who want to make a difference. People who want to grow into a company and someday leave us with the inspiration to do things on their own.”
H-Audio Technologies now eyes to open up distribution of its products and services in every corner of the globe.
This with an eye to also give back to the community via what H-Audio Technologies earns – i.e. To someday open a few community centers built specifically for the troubled youth, “so that we can help pave them towards a better direction. (And open/support) animal sanctuaries and shelters so that cats, dogs, etc. can be safe, away from harm, and possibly find their ‘furever’ homes,” DJ HTown ended.
For more information on H-Audio Technologies, head to https://www.h-audio.com/.