Trying to get yourself heard in the global audio equipment market is a hard job when you're struggling against giant brands such as Beats, Sony and Bose.
But German company Sennheiser has built up an enviable reputation in the market since it was started in the aftermath of the Second World War, when Fritz Sennheiser founded Laboratorium Wennebostel in Wedemark, north of Hanover, Germany.
Laboratorium Wennebostel initially specialized in the production of tube voltmeters. Today, the company that is now known as Sennheiser is a world leader in high-end audio equipment with a turnover of 590.5 million euros in 2013 and more than 2,000 employees.
Resolutely independent and family owned, their business is a prime example of just how big a Mittelstand business can become.
How? "It all began with my grandfather starting the company in 1945, out of nothing," Andreas Sennheiser, grandson of Fritz Sennheiser, told CNBC. Together with his brother Daniel Sennheiser, Andreas is CEO of the company that bears their family name.