Link to original story
Story by Joseph A. Mann Jr.
Audio One, based in Dania Beach and Miami, is a company that designs and builds sophisticated home and office automation networks, audio-visual (A/V) systems that can include home IMAX theaters and state-of-the art recording studios.
Their clients are wealthy — and include rock stars — and their work costs from a minimum of $50,000 to several million.
Audio One was founded by David Frangioni, who grew up in Boston with a passion for rock music and technology, moving from drumming gigs when he was 12 to developing and applying new sound technology as a recording engineer, audio technologist and consultant who designed and installed professional recording studios.
“At 16, I caught the technology bug and realized what new technology could do for drums and other music,” said Frangioni, who is CEO of the company. “I was a ferocious learner and was self-taught in technology.” He studied at the New England Conservatory of Music and Northeastern University in Boston.
Frangioni was the rock-star sound engineer behind many rock stars. He worked for about 15 years as chief in-house engineer for the iconic rock group Aerosmith and collaborated with other music luminaries including Shakira, Sting, Elton John, Styx, Ringo Starr and Ozzy Osbourne.
Working with the rock community, he earned numerous awards for his technical expertise and became a prominent consultant in the recording industry. His office in Sunny Isles Beach is lined with gold and platinum records reflecting his work as a sound engineer with different groups.
In 1995, Frangioni founded Audio One in Boston as a small operation and moved the company to Miami in 1997 to take advantage of the city’s music community and high-end demographics. A few years later, he joined forces with Jennifer Yosowitz, a music lover who studied pre-med and music composition at Simmons College and the New England Conservatory. Yosowitz, vice president and CFO at Audio One, and Frangioni are equal partners in the business.
“Our vision at Audio One was to create a company providing the world’s best home automation and A/V systems for high-end clients,” Frangioni said.
“We went from becoming the top company for designing and installing professional recording studios to integrated security and audio-visual systems for homes,” Yosowitz said.
Still working with the rock star community, Audio One is now focused on developing smart home automation systems, top-quality custom A/V, customized blinds and other high-tech devices for homes and offices.
“We provide world-class technology solutions that are made easy,” Frangioni said. Clients — whether residential or commercial — can control every aspect of their smart systems and see what’s happening (via cameras) from anywhere, with a simple display on a tablet, computer or smartphone.
“We have a lot of competitors but no competition,” Frangioni said.
The systems Audio One sells are highly sophisticated and complex. “We follow each project from start to finish, working closely with the property owners, architects, builders and the construction trade,” Yosowitz said. Sometimes, a project — like a multi-acre estate in Naples — may take over two years to complete, and Audio One must ensure that its systems — including complicated wiring, electronic devices, speakers and screens, fit into the construction plan and work perfectly.
“About 80 percent of our work now is residential,” Frangioni said, with 70 percent new construction and 30 percent renovations, mostly in South Florida.
“We’re now partnering with luxury condo developers, designers and architects like Kobi Karp to install our systems in new projects.”
Company name: Audio One.
Co-owners: David Frangioni, founder and CEO, and Jennifer Yosowitz, vice president and CFO.
Founded: In Boston in 1995 by Frangioni and moved to Miami in 1997.
Revenues: More than $8 million in 2016, with 10 percent growth expected for this year. Revenues vary from year to year because a project may be agreed upon one year but construction work on the property may take two years or more. About 70 percent of company revenues comes from new home and condo construction, and the remainder from retrofits of older residences.
The difference: Audio One has years of experience providing high-end, customized A/V and home automation systems to some of the most discerning clients in the world, including wealthy families and rock stars, Frangioni said. “We have the best engineering, programming and technical team in-house and do not subcontract our work. We follow projects (new construction and renovations) from start to finish. You can have the best A/V equipment in the world, but if you don’t have the custom code and programming, it won’t work.”
Client comment: “My company specializes in providing property management and concierge services to VIP clients with high standards of living,” said Luciana Tamm, president of Miami-based Maximus International Assistance Corp. “It is our responsibility to select the best, most qualified company to provide any kind of services. Audio One has supplied our clients with complete home automation and A/V systems in both a very professional and efficient manner,” she said. The systems that Audio One designs and installs are very sophisticated, but are very simple to use — “which amazes our clients.”
“David Frangioni and his team of highly trained professionals are a significant differentiator, not only for their knowledge and many years of experience, but also for their capacity to work with each individual client as needed.” Tamm said that Audio One takes full responsibility for each system it installs, providing customer support at any time. “Last but not least, it is amazing how Audio One customizes their programs to each family, allowing them to easily control their home from anywhere in the world.”
Competitors: Melody, A Universal Connection and others.
Employees: About 30 full-time in South Florida. Depending on the scope of projects under way, the company may have between 50 and 100 staff members including electrical and mechanical engineers, electronics specialists, software programmers, system designers and installers.
Offices: Corporate headquarters at 35 SW 12th Ave., Dania Beach. Main showroom: 18288 Collins Ave., Sunny Isles Beach, in partnership with interior designer Steven G. Other showrooms with affiliates in the U.S. and overseas and technical staff in Los Angeles.
Learning experience: “We have to set expectations and budgets with clients so that it’s truly a win-win situation,” Frangioni said. “We must align the scope, budget and outcome of each project so that it’s a good business deal for us and the client.”
Best decisions: Building and retaining a team of top professionals, and moving the company’s headquarters to Miami.
Challenges: Technology is constantly evolving and changes occur very quickly. Audio One must keep up with all the changes affecting its service portfolio and train its professional staff to stay ahead of everyone else in the market.
Strategy and outlook: Finding and developing new, high-end clients that need Audio One’s specialized expertise, Frangioni said. This rarified market includes new construction of luxury residences and renovations of existing properties. “The number of estates on Palm Island and Star Island won’t change, but there will be renovations.” In addition, Audio One is teaming up with developers, architects and interior design firms to offer its services. For example, Fendi Chateau Residences in Surfside chose Audio One as its custom integrator for A/V and home automation.
“Our outlook is very strong. Technology is bigger than ever in the high-end residential market, and the knowledge and respect for Audio One is bigger than ever.”