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Philips Restructures Sales Units

In a move to place greater focus on sales and marketing of Philips-branded flat-panel TVs in an increasingly competitive marketplace, Philips has realigned the sales, marketing and support operations of its North American consumer electronics operations.

“With the growing competition in the flat-TV market, we have decided to restructure our sales and marketing operations to better focus on distinguishing our brand and communicating all the benefits that come from owning a Philips TV,” Lindsay Woods, Philips Consumer Electronics North America spokeswoman, told TWICE in a call from the IFA 2007 Show in Berlin.

“The decision was made to split the marketing team into two separate groups — one that would specifically address Philips-branded flat-panel TVs and another that would take care of everything in the other audio/video categories, including DVD, portable DVD, digital audio, home theater in a box, etc.”

In the effort, which was announced to employees last Monday, 19 positions were eliminated and Paul Zeven, CEO of Philips North America, “will be taking on the role of CEO for consumer electronics in North America,” Woods said, adding that the unit had reported to Zeven in the past.

“With Paul’s extensive experience in consumer electronics — he worked in Latin America, Dubai and other markets in CE — it made sense to make him part of the overall team,” Woods said.

Stewart Muller, Philips Consumer Electronics North America president, now heads up the newly created Philips North American connected displays team, handling sales and marketing of Philips and Magnavox branded flat-TV products. Todd Richardson, Philips connected displays VP, will report to Muller.

Andy Mintz, audio/video, telephony and Magnavox-branded products senior VP, will head the team handling other Philips and Magnavox A/V categories.

Woods explained that Philips felt that the marketplace for flat TV “was very different today from the other audio/video businesses, and having a laser focus on Philips flat TV, while allowing the other team to focus on the other businesses, would better overall market growth for the company.”