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Monster Focus Moves From Products To Platforms

LAS VEGAS — It was, as usual, a busy International CES for Monster.

The headphones, cable and audio manufacturer let loose daily announcements during the January show; trotted out celebrities during its annual press conference (as is now par for the course); and filled its booth with designer cars, models and other big names.

It even managed to squeeze in the announcement of a new president, a brand-new position for the company. All of the news centered around Monster’s celebration of its 35th anniversary, and what it has described as its new business plan: to become a platform for collaboration, for creation and for creativity. In short, it doesn’t plan on just making CE products anymore.

TWICE spoke with Neal Bobrick, the new president, a few days after the close of CES, which he cited as being very successful for the company. “We had some very specific goals for the show, and I think we accomplished them,” he said.

According to a statement by Monster, Bobrick will be responsible for executing the strategic vision of Monster and all day-to-day business operations globally. Noel Lee, the company’s founder, will remain in his position of head monster.

Bobrick put it plainly when he said his goal for the company has “always been trying to bring Noel’s vision to life … Noel wants to focus on being innovative with the product and marketing of the partner side of the business, and my job is focusing on bringing that business to life.”

Before coming on as president, Bobrick was previously director of Monster Europe, and he has been with the company for nine years. Prior to Monster, he spent 25 years with Ultimate Electronics.

Since achieving massive success with its partnership with Beats Electronics (which officially ended one year ago), Monster has made it no secret that it wishes to replicate these achievements with other collaborations. Bobrick acknowledged that Monster “lost a significant business when we lost Beats, and our goal has been to build our business back.”

However, he noted, “the way we look at Beats, it really speaks to one segment of the market, and Noel’s visions have been around all the other segments. Whether it’s the business professional, or sporting category, or young influencers, or the fashion category, we believe each one of those represents another Beats.”

At this year’s CES, the company left no stone unturned, announcing partnerships or partnership extensions with actor Nick Cannon, Shaquille O’Neal, Adidas, Lamborghini, UFC and the World Poker Tour, and it also has relationships with EA Gaming, Diesel and Tumi.

Monster has even begun treading in world of content creation by teaming with Cannon’s NCredible brand for two DJ-themed reality TV shows. The shows will feature “more than just product placement,” Cannon said during the CES press conference. “We’ve been there, done that … Now it’s about creating content [and] offering something more tangible.”

It also has its own celebrity-studded poker tournament in the works, which will reportedly be televised on Fox Sports in 2015.