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Fender Appoints New President

Bob Roback(April 28, 2014) Fender announced that Bob Roback will join FMIC as President. This comes just two weeks after CEO Larry Thomas announced his retirement. Roback has worked extensively in the music business, co-founding Launch Media in 1994, an online music site and magazine that was later acquired by Yahoo. He served as VP at Yahoo Music for just under six years, then co-founded Dashbox in 2009, a music licensing service.

Roback will oversee the development of Fender’s digital strategy, and establish a LA office to expand the company’s marketing and digital capabilities. “I’m excited and humbled to have the opportunity to contribute to the future of such an iconic, revered music brand and to develop opportunities for both musicians and fans to connect more closely with it,” said Roback.

Roback received his J.D. magna cum laude from the University of Minnesota Law School and his B.S. in Economics from The Wharton School of The University of Pennsylvania.

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7 Responses to “Fender Appoints New President”
  1. With the new man on board maybe we’ll see some of the cool guitars like the Jaquars, Jazzmasters, & pawn shop series also produced as left handed. C’mon Fender, build them and we will come.

  2. OaklandA OaklandA says:

    Passed over for this job once again…

  3. howlin howlin says:

    Huh? Digital capabilities? Really . . . ?

  4. TDPRI TDPRI says:

    The CEO of Fender likely leaves all decisions about what guitars will sell and which wont to the Product Managers tasked with those decisions. So, I doubt this change will change the makeup of the guitar product line.

    And, the music and digital background are more likely to see Fender expand in those directions.

    Keep in mind that Gibson has bought up a number of audio and tech companies lately. Just this last week they purchased Woox Innovations – http://www.woox.com/en/home – a subsidiary of Philips electronics. Last Summer they purchased Teac.

    It’s a war out there… and it’s bigger than just guitars.

  5. Mjark Mjark says:

    He seems unqualified to head a guitar manufacturing company to me. But I guess what Fender once was is long gone anyway.

  6. Jimcord1 Jimcord1 says:

    Hope it works out well. But when I see a lawyer (JD) with an econ background, I can’t help but cringe a little.
    As a victim of an eerily similar change in leadership at a great publishing co. I worked at for a decade.
    First 10 yrs, run by the founder- creativity, innovation and customer feedback were prized.
    After takeover/leadership change, that culture was a memory. The ‘new guy’ was an attorney with an econ background, and no experience or passion in the publishing industry, or our content/audience.
    The company shutdown three years later.
    Not saying Fender’s going anywhere, but it wouldn’t surprise me to see a return to CBS-esque approach to products and QC.

  7. Tele-EL84 says:

    Fender is still a great product, but it has long since ceased to be special. There are too many guitars. Do we really need 50 versions of the Strat? Also, the prices are obnoxious. $4000 for custom shop amps; come on. Get over yourself. You can buy some vintage pieces for not much more than vintage REISSUE prices. The bright spot of late is that there are decent pickups in the American Standard series. I hope things turn around, but I am not holding my breath.

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