roducing scintillatingly lifelike sound from small boxes has made an audiophile cult hero of Amar Bose while giving him a $2 billion fortune as the founder and CEO of the world's leading premium audio component maker. None of it would have happened had the pair of speakers a young engineering professor bought in 1956 lived up to their billing. To an acoustics engineer gifted in high-level math, the challenge proved too enticing to pass up. By 1964 Bose had arrived at a solution for producing concert-quality sound in a living room. With patents in hand and an investment of life savings from his former MIT thesis advisor Y. W. Lee, Bose set about making his name synonymous with speakers of uncompromising quality, and more recently, with small radios that put out big, rich sound.
Apu "Amar" Gopal Bose was born to an Indian Bengali father and a white American mother in Philadelphia on November 2, 1929. As a young man his father had been an agitator for Indian independence and had been forced to flee Kolkata to evade British colonial authorities. Amar's first proven success as a tech entrepreneur came at the age of 13. To help his family make ends meet, the boy recruited schoolmates as workers and started a business repairing model trains and radios. Bose graduated from MIT with an electrical engineering degree, then spent a year as a researcher at Philips Electronics in Eindhoven, Netherlands. During a year in New Delhi on a Fulbright Scholarship, Bose met his first wife Prema.
For his PhD from MIT Bose wrote a thesis on the mathematics behind non-linear systems.
As an assistant professor he conducted research in acoustics which ultimately led to the creation of speakers that could reproduce in a home setting the dominantly reflected sound fields found in concert halls. Sensing a profit potential, Bose turned to personal acquaintences to finance his proposed venture. They were seduced by the quality of sound emanating from Bose's creations. During the next four decades Bose built his company into an employer of 10,000 while retaining his MIT professorship.
Bose currently divides his time between his home in Wayland, Massacusetts near Bose Corporation's Framingham, and Hawaii. He retired his MIT professorship in 2000. He lives with second wife Ursula Bolthauser, a Bose Corp. senior executive. He has a son and a daughter.