Roland Takes Over Cakewalk

Roland Corporation has declared that they are now a major share holder of Cakewalk. Roland and Cakewalk have been working together since 1995, and have cooperated closely on numerous business projects and complimentary product lines, but this is the first time that the Japanese concern has plugged the trigger in acquiring a software company. Several industry watchdogs have criticized Roland for wearing cement shoes when it came down to making some bargain acquisitions when the software market heated up several years ago. The chatter reached a crescendo when Arturia released a virtual Jupiter-8, which many thought that Roland should have developed themselves.

In 2003, Roland augmented its strategic partnership with Cakewalk by becoming a minor shareholder in the corporation. Roland expanded its commitment to the Cakewalk product line even further when it began bundling Cakewalk software such as Sonar LE with a wide range of Roland/BOSS/Edirol products. In recent years, the two companies co-developed and released recording solutions, including the SONAR Power Studio.

Recently, Cakewalk adopted Roland’s REAC technology (Roland Ethernet Audio Communication) to develop the SONAR REAC Recording System—capable of recording up to 40 channels of high quality audio directly input to a PC via an Ethernet port. New products for musicians and professional audio producers will be branded as “Cakewalk by Roland” — similar to how Roland positions Edirol.

The Future: It took Roland over 5 years to essentially buyout Cakewalk — which some would say is way too long in the current climate of innovation. Roland seriously needs to enter the soft instrument market sooner rather than later…Arturia would appear to be a good fit…but can Tanaka make the move before it’s too late?

Author: FutureMusic

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