This is interesting: Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) intends to sell the Guild guitar brand to Cordoba Music Group, whose president Jonathan Thomas is the son of Larry Thomas, who just stepped down as CEO of Fender. It was recently announced that the Guild facility in New Hartford, Connecticut would be closed, so I guess Cordoba is effectively buying a bunch of trademarks, which must be a lot cheaper than buying a whole factory and everything associated with it. Once upon a time I was a business news journalist, and there’s a part of me that would love to know more, such as when did Fender start talking with Cordoba? Is FMIC actively seeking to divest any other brands? Personally I’d love to see Hamer sold and resurrected. How fricking awesome would it be to one day soon see new Hamers? Anyway, following finalisation of the deal Guild guitars will be made in Oxnard, California, rather than on the east coast. Here’s the press release for more info:
FENDER MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS CORPORATION ANNOUNCES INTENT TO SELL GUILD® BRAND TO CORDOBA MUSIC GROUP
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (May 6, 2014) – Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) announced today that it has finalized a letter of intent to sell the Guild guitar brand and related assets to Cordoba Music Group, the manufacturer of Cordoba acoustic guitars, ukuleles and accessories.
“It was important for us to find a great steward to continue the important legacy of Guild guitars,” said FMIC’s interim CEO and board member Scott Gilbertson. “We have found a great fit in Cordoba Music Group, a company committed to quality and with impressive U.S.-based production capabilities.”
“Guild is an iconic American brand with a rich heritage and we’re truly excited and honored to be the ones to move it forward. It’s a great complement to our current position in the acoustic guitar market and provides opportunities for growth in new categories,” said Cordoba Music Group President Jonathan Thomas. “We will continue to make instruments of exceptional quality in the USA, and look forward to giving one of the industry’s great American brands a new home.”
Sales of Guild guitars will continue as usual during the transition process. Upon finalization of the sale, Cordoba Music Group is expected to begin production in Oxnard, Calif. FMIC recently announced the closing of Guild’s U.S. manufacturing facility in New Hartford, Conn.
Guild was founded in New York in 1953 by Alfred Dronge and the company’s excellence in acoustic guitar design made the name synonymous with acoustic quality and craftsmanship throughout the ensuing decades. Guild joined the FMIC family in 1995, combining it with modern design to produce new generations of guitars that remain highly sought-after instruments.
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About Fender Musical Instruments Corporation: Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) is one of the world’s leading musical instrument manufacturers, marketers and distributors, whose portfolio of brands includes Fender®, Squier®, Gretsch®, Jackson®, Takamine®, Guild®, EVH®, Ovation®, Charvel® and Groove Tubes®, among others. For more information, visit www.fender.com.
About Cordoba Music Group: Cordoba Music Group (CMG) is a musical instrument manufacturer and distributor specializing in acoustic guitars and related accessories. CMG owns and operates the Cordoba brand, the industry’s leading nylon string acoustic guitar brand, and handles U.S. distribution for Savarez®, Aquila®, and HumiCase®. For more information, visitwww.cordobaguitars.com.