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Quasarbd57 1.png

Quasar is a North American brand of electronics, first used by Motorola in 1967 for a model line of transistorized color televisions. These televisions were well-known for containing all serviceable parts in a drawer beneath the television's cabinet. Soon, it was established as its own brand, with all Motorola-manufactured televisions being sold as "Quasar by Motorola".


Quasar Electronics, Inc.

On May 29, 1974, Motorola, Inc., sold its television manufacturing division — including its plants in Pontiac, IL, Franklin Park, IL, and Markham, Ontario — to Matsushita, who continued production of home television receivers under a newly incorporated entity, Quasar Electronics, Inc., an American managed subsidiary of Matsushita Electronic Corporation of America (MECA). Motorola continued to operate its plant in Quincy, IL for two years (until 1976) at which time ownership of the plant passed to the new company.[1]

Corporate names
  • Quasar Electronics Corporation — incorporated January 12, 1976, in Delaware
  • Quasar Electronics Corporation — incorporated January 22, 1976, in Illinois
  • Panasonic Corporation of North America; incorporated January 14, 1974, in Delaware
Former CEOs of Quasar
  • F. Jack Pluckman

Panasonic in the Media

A 1990 episode of Frontline, the PBS news program, claims that the Matsushita acquisition of Motorola's Quasar division was the beginning of the downfall of the U.S. television industry. The program claimed that Matsushita's acquisition was nothing more than a ruse designed for Japanese-made sets, and sets assembled of Japanese parts, to avoid tariffs, with sets under the Quasar brand still being considered "domestically made", although Quasar's engineering and manufacturing division was being scaled-down.

Many American managers who transferred from Motorola felt discriminated against. Almon Clegg, a former manager at Quasar was quoted as saying "In some companies, in fact in some parts of Matsushita, I saw complete separation. The Japanese had their own organization, the Americans had theirs and they virtually didn't communicate with each other." After a mass layoff of American managers from Quasar in 1986, a discrimination lawsuit was filed against Matsushita.

As of 2005, the Quasar name sees limited use in North America, either being affixed to discontinued products from the Panasonic line or more value-oriented products than Matsushita's Panasonic brand, being sold in such places such as drug stores and supermarkets. It is rumored that Matsushita plans to discontinue the Quasar brand soon.

See also


  1. ^ Motorola Completes Sale of TV Business to Matsushita, The Daily Leader (Pontiac, Illinois), pg 1, May 29, 1974

External links



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