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WV firm ships high-tech PA systems worldwide

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — Scott Hedges, president and CEO of Power Sonix Inc. in Martinsburg, has been named the West Virginia Exporter of the Year by the West Virginia Small Business Development Center.

“It’s been a team effort, but Scott took on a tremendous amount of personal risk, because he believed in the business,” Matthew Coffey, WVSBDC business coach for the Eastern Panhandle, said Tuesday in a telephone interview. Coffey nominated Hedges for the award.

“People usually don’t think about a local business exporting overseas – they talk about importing cheap products, but Power Sonix makes high-end, high-quality products for export in a tiny building they lease in Martinsburg that you walk past and never notice.”

The company has been recognized by the state several times for exporting its innovative public address systems to more than 20 countries in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Africa, the Americas and the Carribean. It was most recently recognized for breaking into the Brunei market.

Power Sonix was formed in 1997 by former employees of Applied Electro Mechanics after that company was disolved. The company hand-assembles high-tech loudspeaker systems used by military, police, emergency services and others on the land, in the air and on the sea. The product has been cited for being the most powerful, clearest, most long-distance speech projection system in the world.

“There’s not another company in town sending products overseas,” Coffey said. “It’s sad not more places are shipping high-end American-made products overseas.”

Hedges was in Fairmont Thursday receiving his award as part of WVSBDC’s observation of National Small Business Week, which runs through Saturday. He is among 10 small businesses honored by the WVSBDC as well as three small business lenders.

“Year after year, the West Virginia SBDC is privileged to work with and nominate an elite group of small business owners for their innovation, hard work and creativity,” Kristina Oliver, state director of the WVSBDC, said. “We at the WVSBDC wholeheartedly believe that these hardworking men and women are the entrepreneurs that keep our state’s economy growing and thriving. I’d like to personally congratulate each nominee and this year’s award winners on a job well done.”

For more information about Power Sonix, go to www.powersonix.com.

Staff writer John McVey can be reached at 304-263-3381, ext. 128, or twitter.com/jmcveyJN.

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