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Victor And Its Growing Number Of Subsidiaries, Partners And Plants

During the 1920s, Victor and its executives gained supreme wealth which allowed them to establish markets beyond their original operations base in Camden, NJ. After officially establishing Victor Talking Machine Co with Emile Berliner, the latter headed to the U.S. in order to take charge in managing the remaining investments of the Gramophone Company.

Berliner Gramophone Company

Known as the first record company in Canada, the Berliner Gramophone Company was also the maker of “Gram-O-Phone” records and talking machines. It was founded by Emile Berliner in Montreal. After being chartered on April 8, 1904, the company was reorganized in 1909 as the Berliner Gramophone Co. A series of developments occurred following the reorganization which include the opening of a recording studio on Peel Street, the building of a factory at the corner of Lenoir and St-Antoine (1906), and the building of a plant at Lacasse and St-Antoine in 1921 to supplement the factory.

Victor Talking Machine Co of Canada

While Emile Berliner was the Berliner Gramophone President (until 1924), his son Herbert was the vice-president and general manager until 1921 following the latter’s resignation. Herbert decided to devote his time to Compo, a company that he founded in 1918. His brother Edgar succeeded him at the Berliner Gramophone Co who was previously the secretary-treasurer of the company.

In 1924, Edgar gave up the controlling interest in the company to the Victor Talking Machine Co of Camden, NJ. Later on, he renamed the Berliner Gramophone Co into the Victor Talking Machine Co of Canada. Edgar was also the president of the newly founded company and managed to keep the position until 1930.

The Gramophone Company

Based in the U.K., the Gramophone Company was founded on behalf of Emil Berliner and was recognized as one of the early recording companies that was ever established. It was also the parent organization for the world-renowned label “His Master’s Voice” as well as the European arm of the U.S. Victor Talking Machine Company.

Victor Talking Machine Company of Japan

Founded in 1927, the subsidiary Victor Talking Machine Company of Japan became the nation’s manufacturer and marketer of phonographs. Otherwise known as JVC, the company is one of several companies in Japan which had evolved to dominate the consumer electronics market worldwide.

The German Gramophone Company

Trevor Williams and William Barry Owen finalized a deal with Emile Berliner wherein all parties agreed that gramophones would be manufactured in the U.S. and then shipped for distribution in Europe through The Gramophone Company. The first round of order included the shipment of 3,000 machines which sold for 10 British pounds.

Later on, Berliner decided to set up his own company where the European discs would be manufactured. In 1898, the company was established in Hanover, Germany as part of an agreement with his brother Joseph’s offer of investing in the enterprise. The new company came to be known as “The German Gramophone Company,” otherwise known as Deutsche Grammophon.


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