Technicolor SA

Technicolor (formerly Thomson) is a publicly traded electronics and services company headquartered in Issy -les -Moulineaux, near Paris. Technicolor is the brands Thomson, RCA, Grass Valley and SpeedTouch on the market. The company was transformed in recent years more and more of an electronics manufacturer to a service company.

The Thomson and RCA brand for consumer electronics are now licensed by Technicolor to foreign manufacturers; Technicolor, the company itself has completely withdrawn from the market for consumer electronics. An exception is the television of Thomson and RCA, which are licensed exclusively to the Chinese group TCL. The market was divided between the two trade marks: While the TV in Europe are sold under the brand Thomson, television under the brand RCA are exclusively represented in the North American market. In Asia, TCL sells the products under their own brand, but also under the brand name Rowa.


The beginnings

The previous company Thomson - Houston Electric Company was founded in 1879 by Elihu Thomson and Edwin Houston in the United States.

In 1892 the company was combined with the founded by Thomas Alva Edison Edison General Electric Company for General Electric. In 1893, the Compagnie Française Thomson - Houston was founded with headquarters in Paris as a sister company of General Electric.


In 1966, the Compagnie Française Thomson - Houston with Hotchkiss -Brandt fusioninierte to Thomson - Houston - Hotchkiss -Brandt. Shortly thereafter, the company was renamed Thomson -Brandt.

In 1968, the electric business of Thomson -Brandt with Compagnie Générale de telegraphy Sans Fil was fused to Thomson -CSF. Thomson -Brandt held a 40% interest in this company.

1970s, 1980s and 1990s

Thomson was until the 1980s a major semiconductor manufacturer. The semiconductor division Semiconducteurs Thomson (France) merged with SGS Microelettronica (Italy) at SGS -Thomson, now known as STMicroelectronics. Thomson-CSF was also a member of the Group, a company with products from the defense sector (radar, missiles, etc.). Meanwhile CSF operates under the name of Thales Group.

The company constantly increased in the 1980s and 1990s, with scores of new acquisitions of other companies. Well-known companies like Telefunken, North Mende, SABA and RCA were bought from Thomson; under these names but are sold to no products only a few.


In 2001, the American company Technicolor, which the Technicolor Technicolor process had developed, was acquired.

In 2004, the television production of Thomson and a Chinese company called TCL was transferred to a joint venture TTE, which exclusively produces TV and at the same time is also the largest producer of televisions. Here also the manufacturer to tailor the TV are developed and manufactured. However, other major components of renowned manufacturers receive for their TV, such as picture tubes. The loss- Schneider- TV plant in Germany was closed in 2005.

2005 bought Thomson Europe the German set- top box market leader (DVB -S and DVB -T) and accessory specialist SM Electronic (brand SKYMASTER ).

End of 2005 / beginning of 2006, the Thomson group, acquired a 90 percent stake in the Japanese company Canopus, which manufactures hardware and software for video editing. In Q3 2006, the Thomson Group announced that it completely withdraws from the business with consumer electronics. Thomson AVA ( based in Boulogne near Paris) and SM Electronic ( based in stack Field / Braak near Hamburg ) should be taken over on 1 January 2007 by the Swiss Oristano group. A completion message of the takeover at the beginning of 2007 has failed. The customers of Thomson AVA and Skymaster were informed that the sale could not be settled and one is still looking for an investor. According to industry rumors, should by the end of June 2007, found a buyer and the sale will be reported in the course of July. In the race were a group of investors and a strategic investor from the consumer electronics. Also, a spin-off or a separate sale of SM Electronic ( Skymaster ) was not excluded.

In October 2007, Thomson was the task of the consumer electronics division AVA (Audio / Video / Accessories ) at the end of 2007. While for the business in the U.S., a buyer could be found, the first did not succeed in Europe. In January 2008, the German subsidiary Thomson - SM Electronic ( SKYMASTER ) was adopted by the Gigaset AG.

On 1 January 2011, the subsidiary Grass Valley was sold to the private equity firm Francisco Partners.

Renaming in Technicolor

On January 26, 2010 Thomson changed its name to Technicolor, after the company after a deep crisis of its obligations has been able to roll over. Originally Thomson Technicolor had bought in 2001 and now operates under its name. The Thomson brand for consumer electronics will continue licensed to other manufacturers.


Logo before the name change to January 26, 2010

News Logo since January 26, 2010