In 1979, 18 years after Raymond Cooke founded KEF Electronics, Ltd., in a humble Nissen Hut on the site of a former foundry site, he stood in front of Queen Elizabeth II and engaged in a brief conversation with her.


“This is for loudspeakers?” the Queen asked.


“High-fidelity stereo loudspeakers, ma’am,” Cooke replied. The nomination for OBE had come from Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s office and was for Cooke and KEF’s excellence in contribution to the United Kingdom’s trade exports.


The Queen nodded her understanding and hung the medal that indicated Cooke was now an Officer ofRaymond Cooke, OBE the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire onto his morning suit. Tails and top hat were the order of the day for this most austere occasion.


During his speech at the OBE celebration dinner later that evening, Cooke emphasized that his award was “recognition of the diligence and hard work of all the directors and employees of KEF,” and that would not have succeeded without them.


Forty-one years later, and fifty-nine years after KEF’s founding, all of us here at KEF are still building on the achievements of the people who made KEF an industry leader and we’re all proud to continue doing our parts to keep KEF at the forefront of the audio industry.


(Left - Raymond Cooke is flanked by his daughter Ann and son Martin at Buckingham Palace, after receiving his OBE medal from Queen Elizabeth II)