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Fender Gets Rid of Guild Brand

GlobalLogoFender has announced plans to sell the Guild brand to Cordoba Music Group, a distributor of nylon string guitars and ukeleles  in the United States.

Originally founded in 1952, Guild was purchased by Fender in 1995. During that time, Fender moved production from Rhode Island to Corona, California, then to Tacoma, Washington, finally ending up in New Hartford, Connecticut. On April 23, Fender announced it was shutting down the New Hartford plant.

Sales of Guild guitars will continue as usual during the transition. Cordoba expects to move production to Oxnard, California. “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,” said Cordoba President Jonathan Thomas.

The sale was announced by FMIC’s interim CEO and board member Scott Gilbertson.

Many changes have been afoot at Fender in the past month. In April, CEO Larry Thomas announced his retirement, and Bob Roback, who previously worked in digital music and music licensing, was named as Fender Musical Instrument’s new President/CEO.

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7 Responses to “Fender Gets Rid of Guild Brand”
  1. qblue says:

    I am not surprised. I saw John with a Guild electric guitar on TV a few months ago, and it was priced upwards of $7000 MSRP. MIA products won’t sell at those atmospheric prices. First Hamer, then Guild… what’s next Jackson???? Where’s Mike Eldred??

    So now the deconstruction of FMIC begins….It was good while it lasted….I hope that the core business remains and Fender can improve its brand.

  2. artdecade artdecade says:

    ^ Their Gretsch lines coming out of Japan are the finest guitars they make. Fender is doing ok. No one wants a Guild anymore. Makes sense to move on.

  3. dlew919 dlew919 says:

    Ovation, as well: although that was the manufacturing, wasn’t it? There’s still Ovation guitars being made? Hopefully, yes, Fender is just trimming some fat, and moving towards even better product. And best of luck to those who are moving to a new company!

  4. teleroj says:

    Guild is a great brand with a proud tradition. I have a Westerly, RI made X-175 archtop that is a fantastic jazzbox. I am sad to see a wonderful american guitar brand struggle. Some of thier old acoustics and twelve strings were also brilliant. Hopefully the new owners Cordoba will do something good for the brand. I have no comment as to it as a business decision for Fender.

  5. gibsonjunkie gibsonjunkie says:

    I have two New Hartford Guilds and a third on the way. They are exceptional guitars and I hope that Cordoba continues the tradition. Thanks Fender for helping put together a team that was building some amazing instruments -and good luck to Cordoba. It sounds like Guild will be owned by guitar lovers again!

  6. Zeonoid says:

    Well good news for GUILD as its gonna move from china back to where it belongs…

  7. Maggot Maggot says:

    I tried some of the new Guild electrics, and they’re fantastic, although I know that Guild’s core products are acoustic and their electric line has come and gone several times. Great fret work, and amazing, unique sound – the new pickups are are smoother and brighter than Gibson-style humbuckers, but don’t sound like Filter-trons or P-90s either. If you’re looking for really special import electric in the $1000 range, check out the new Guilds.

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