The success story of Hörzentrum Oldenburg GmbH is the result of many years of development work. To close the gap between basic university research and clinical practice, the company was founded in 1996 by physicist and physician Prof. Dr. Dr. Birger Kollmeier (Carl-von-Ossietzky University Oldenburg), the phoniater and ENT physician Dr. Rüdiger Schönfeld and the Protestant Hospital Oldenburg.
The Hörzentrum Oldenburg GmbH started work with four employees in an office container on the university campus. Initially, Hörzentrum Oldenburg GmbH primarily carried out projects in the field of hearing aid field tests and general research and development projects. Industrial prototypes of hearing impaired people were extensively tested under controlled but also realistic conditions. This gave the industry valuable information from an independent source about the performance and improvement possibilities of their new hearing aids. The information was always exclusive for the client, but was also published several times on request, so that an unofficial brand began to develop: "tested by Hörzentrum Oldenburg". In its second year, the company opened the "Medical and audiological care" department with the two services "Special Audiological Consultation" and "Hearing Aid Consulting" in cooperation with the Protestant Hospital Oldenburg.
Since 2002, Hörzentrum Oldenburg GmbH has been operating the "Haus des Hörens". The building was built with the support of the state of Lower Saxony and offers ideal conditions for the transfer of the latest audiological research results between scientists and physicians, industry and practice. The combination of different institutions under one roof is ideal to meet the continuing high interest in scientific studies and audiological products and services "Made in Oldenburg". Today, Hörzentrum Oldenburg GmbH is regarded as an example of successful technology transfer between university research and industry.
With more than 20 employees, Hörzentrum Oldenburg GmbH implemented more than 30 projects on behalf of industry in 2015 and was involved in various public projects, e.g. in the "Hearing4All" excellence cluster won in the federal Excellence Initiative in 2012. Without losing the basic idea of being a competent contact for hearing-impaired people, the company has developed into an internationally recognized high-tech service provider. The expertise of the scientists now extends far beyond audiology. Projects on human-machine interaction are covered as well as psychological impact studies.