Founded on care

The Oticon story starts with one man’s passion to help his wife lead a better life, unhindered by her hearing loss. This passion to empower people in need of hearing support is what drove us through the last century, what drives us now, and what will take us into the next. 

 Oticon History Movie

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Video Thumbnail - Oticon History

Experience the Oticon history

  • 1902

    The first royal hearing aid

    On the 9th of August, 1902, the Danish-born Crown Princess Alexandra wears a hearing aid for her coronation as Queen of England,

    The following year, driven by a heartfelt desire to help his hearing-impaired wife, Hans Demant travels from Denmark to England to buy the same type of hearing device.

    first royal hearing aid
  • 1904

    Hans Demant brings hearing devices to Denmark

    Driven by the desire to improve the lives of his wife and all people in need of hearing support, Hans Demant wins a contract with General Acoustic Co. and begins the import and distribution of the first hearing devices to Denmark: the electric Acousticon devices.

    man in black and white
  • 1910

    Hans' son, William, takes over

    Hans Demant's son, William, takes over the company upon his father's death. William travels to the production facilities in the USA to learn about the manufacture and repair of Acousticon hearing devices.

    william takes over
  • 1929

    The Great Depression makes an impact

    In the wake of World War I and of the infamous Wall Street crash of this year, trading restrictions make it difficult to import finished goods. William begins to import incomplete devices with no wires or batteries, and completes production on Danish soil.

    man and woman in a factory
  • 1940

    William produces hearing aid components in Denmark

    During World War II (1939-1945), William Demant is unable to import goods from USA, England or France. He decides to produce components for the latest Acousticon devices in Denmark. He then manufactures the first Danish-made licensed hearing device — the Acousticus — a copy of the original Acousticon model.

    women in black and white
  • 1946

    American-Danish Hearing Corporation is born

    Following a disagreement with Dictograph products (formerly General Acousticon Company), William Demant enters into partnership with American hearing aid producer, Charles Lehman. Together they establish the American-Danish Oticon Corporation, headquatered in Copenhagen.

    american danish hearing corporation
  • 1954

    50th birthday celebrations

    Oticon celebrates its 50th year of business with all 155 employees invited to an event in Copenhagen. Oticon can proudly call itself the leading provider of hearing aids to the Danish public sector.

    a gathering of people
  • 1965

    Oticon goes global

    Oticon expands its global presence with Oticon Corp. opening in the USA. Oticon companies are founded in Switzerland, Norway, Germany, Scotland, Japan, Italy, New Zealand and France. The largest overseas markets are England and Sweden, and later on, China.

    adult and child with hearing aids
  • 1977

    First Oticon in-the-ear device

    Spurred by international developments, Oticon introduces the first ultra-discreet in-the-ear hearing device. Global competition is heating up.

    first oticon in the ear device
  • 1991

    Time to Think the Unthinkable 

    Headquarters move to a new location at Strandvejen. Under the motto "Time to think the unthinkable" new and revolutionary ways of working are introduced across the whole company.

    With Lars Kolind and Niels Jacobsen leading the way, Oticon enters a new phase of transformation. Niels Jacobsen later takes over to drive Oticon forward to international success.

    tuborg hellerup
  • 1996

    Doing it digitally

    Oticon launches the first fully digital hearing device, DigiFocus. The advanced amplification of sound is programmed to fit the individual's hearing loss. This takes us one step closer to the full wireless connectivity we can offer today. 

    hearing aids
  • 2004

    Celebrating a century of care

    Oticon introduces the slogan "People First" and is known across the world not only as the world's second largest manufacturer of hearing devices, but also for its organizational structure, teamwork and view on employees. Oticon celebrates its centenary on June 8th.

    people working together
  • 2007

    Hearing aids redefined

    Oticon launches Epoq. Two hearing aids can now continuously communicate with each other to provide a very life-like sound picture. The new solution provides a better sense of the sound scene in the user's environment, and it allows for connectivity with e.g. mobile phones, and music players.

    hearing aids and remote
  • 2010

    People first moves into the future

    Oticon is stronger than ever. People First remains our promise, reflecting how everything we do always begins with the people we are doing it for.

    people in an office
  • 2014

    We hear with our brain

    Today, Oticon hearing aids support the way the brain works and make sense of sound.

    The basic philosophy of BrainHearing™ is to support your brain by giving it the conditions it needs to create meaning from sound – instead of overloading it by turning up the volume.

  • 2016

    Opening Up to a World of Sound

    With the launch of Oticon Opn™, Oticon tackles a challenge that even the most advanced hearing solutions can’t solve — the ability to handle noisy environments with multiple speakers.

    In addition to easy connection to smartphones and wireless devices, Opn is the first hearing aid to connect to the Internet.

  • 2020

    Life-Changing Technology

    Oticon introduces a new guiding principle “Life-Changing Technology” and offers the most comprehensive product portfolio in the industry.

    Now even more children and adults can benefit from Oticon hearing solutions that improve not only hearing but overall quality of life.

  • Life-changing technology

    Our vision is a world where hearing loss is no limitation.

  • News

    See the latest news and press releases from Oticon.

  • Technology leaders

    Oticon has been a world leader in hearing care since 1904.

  • Contact us

    Oticon has offices and distributors all over the world.