Amstrad is a british electronics manufacturer based in Brentwood, Essex. It was founded in 1968 by Lord Alan Michael Sugar.
The company name is a contraction of Alan Michael Sugar TRADing.
Current company address:
Amstrad was a leading consumer electronics manufacturer in the seventies, thanks to its low cost products. Lower prices were achieved by using injection moulding plastic. Thanks to its products popularity, it starts growing rapidly and going public in the London Stock Exchange.
The following years, it doubled it's time every year and started selling its own personal computers in an attempt to lead the market due to lower costs.
The CPC 464 was launched in 1984. It was based on the 8-bit Zilog Z80 processor, clocked at 3.7 Mhz, with 64 Kb of RAM, tape deck and a choice of monochrome green or colour monitor. It was launched in UK, France, Australia, Germany and Spain where it became a success.
The CPC 464 was followed by the CPC 664 (the first model with a 3“ disk drive) and the CPC6128 (with 128 Kb of RAM and a more professional keyboard). In 1985, the Amstrad PCW 8256 Word Processor was launched with great success, due to their competitors high prices. The PC1512, running the MS-DOS operating system, followed in 1986 and a year later, The PCW 8512 was launched. 1988 saw the launch of the first Amstrad portable computer, the PPC512/640.
In the early nineties, Amstrad began shifting to portable computers. After several failures like the GX4000 games console or the PenPad PDA, they changed their focus to cumminication and acquired several companies, like Betacom, Dancall Telecom, Vigien Computers and Dataflex Design Comunications.
Amstrad was one of the major suppliers of set top boxes to UK satellite TV provider Sky.
On July 2007, BSkyB announced a takeover of Amstrad and the 2nd of July 2008, Alan Sugar stepped dows as Amstrad chairman.