The future of Music Retail when Guitar Center is Gone

Posted on: March 8, 2015

Not sure if everyone knows, but guitar center is on life support. Their lay-offS continue and their bond rating is now doWN to Junk status. What does the future hold for retailing. Many of the small retailers are gone and the sale of online instruments will still drive the prices below what makes sense for smaller dealers.

What does the future of a post Guitar Center world look like. I am not sure but online business will continue to grow and margins for guitar manufactures will still be a challenge. I wonder what preparations the large manufactures have in store.
<guitar center Tombstone copy

8 responses to “The future of Music Retail when Guitar Center is Gone”

  1. Guitartec

    It will be truly sad when the Evil Empire closes it’s doors soon. I really feel bad for the lower-level employees and their vendors. The now defunct upper management, along with Bain Capitol on the other hand, ought to be ashamed of themselves. But of course, they’re probably laughing all the way to the bank instead. How they could not acknowledge owing a BILLION dollars, but also continue on the same spending path while knowing this? That is just ludicrous. Folks, did you know they opened a GC in Times Square, the most expensive real estate you can think of, when they knew they owed gobbs of money they couldn’t repay? Nice strategy! And guess who will ultimately pay? YEP!

    1. Steve

      Hey. Speaking of Bain Capitol, I read awhile back that the reason they bought out the original GC, was Bain saw the growing market for high end vintage guitars. When you hear of a “private collector” buying a few 59 Les Pauls, or Flying V’s, or entire high end collections, it is them ! Investing in high end vintage guitars and “vaulting them” brings a better return on their investment that regular stocks would. When it comes time to unload, they will always be ahead.

      1. wannabe

        I think Bain lost so much “burned” by the Guitar Center loss, they are out of the music business. My guess it would be a musician diversifying their portfolio. Like Lars Urich of Metallica buying high end art. He bought some in the last few years when the market was down. I bet he is “up” on most of what he bought


  2. wannabe

    I think thought, something better will come back.. like maybe small store that carry a variety of top quality instruments as well as Gibson and Fender, who I believe are just as responsible for Guitar Center going out of business/ They pushed value instead of quality. And Preyed on buyers who collect and flip guitars with all their special issues, Rather than players. Hey but mine is just one Opinion They were good at one time. Fender is not in good financial shape either. They luckly have Bono and his Venture capital group which was part of FAcebook IPO behind them.


  3. Guitartec

    Here it is January 13, 2016 and they are STILL IN BUSINESS! I just bought a new guitar from GC in RI. They still owe more money than ever and they are still screwing all their vendors up the wazoo. I thought I’d do my part to help, so I went in and bought a shredder guitar that I’ve been eye-ballin’ for some time now. Oddly, I can’t help but feel that I just made the GC CEO have a larger Xmas bonus.

  4. wannabe

    guitartec lets see some photos of you newest guitar you posted

  5. Steve

    I am from Mass. close to the NH border. There is a GC in NH that has the same gear hanging from it’s walls for close to a year now. Never see much movement of gear. All they do is rearrange the inside of the store from time to time to create the illusion that gear is moving ! Sales staff is not very knowledgeable, with a huge turnover of staff as well. They give you practically nothing for a trade in value, even for vintage guitars & amps !! Yet, they are always advertising that they give “top dollar” for trades. I have had numerous sales people tell me that the “corporation will not allow me to do that” They are always having some sort of sale advertised on gear thru the TV or radio. A sale just about every month? It does sound like they are sinking. I guess at one time they were great, not anymore. I have deduced myself to just buying guitar magazines and strings when I visit now. I would much rather give the business to “mom & pop” music stores. Also, the Boston, MA store is no better. Basically they suck now !

  6. Guitartec

    12/1/2017- SOME HOW, GC IS STILL HANGIN’ ON. I heard Ares Management bought the GC/Bain mess in 2014. I’ll bet Bain Crapitol cooked the books pretty sharply to sell that catastrophe. I’ll still feel bad if GC goes under tho. I’ll feel even worse for the vendors they screw in the process, cept for Gibson.

Leave a Reply