Guitar Center Files for bankruptcy

KohanMike

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It's been coming for a long time. This will allow them to reorganize, probably close a few stores. I frequent the Hollywood and West Los Angeles stores, which I think operate pretty well.


This is Michael Kohan in Los Angeles, Beverly Grove near the Beverly Center
9 tenor cutaway ukes, 4 acoustic bass ukes, 12 solid body bass ukes, 14 mini electric bass guitars (Total: 39)

Donate to The Ukulele Kids Club, they provide ukuleles to children in hospital music therapy programs. www.theukc.org
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bsfloyd

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The Guitar Centers in central Ohio are an embarrassment.

- Edited to remove snide remarks.
 

pmorey

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That's a shame. I got my Grateful Dead uke from them - and a few miscellaneous items. They're 1.3 billion in debt! Wow!

But now after a likely debt for equity swap, remarkably only $500 million in debt!
 

clear

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I hope they don't close any of the stores near me.
They are a great place to buy many things big and small. You just can't beat 10 minute delivery time.
 

dwizum

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There are a lot of nuances to how this pandemic is affecting businesses and industries. Frankly I'm a little surprised about GC. I know they've been circling the drain for a while now, but the manager at my local store recently told me that they'd had a bunch of really strong months after things reopened here in the summer. I guess they weren't strong enough to make up for weeks or months of no income when you're already falling behind.

Compare the GC news with Fender's recent announcement that they're having a record-breaking year:

https://www.guitarworld.com/news/fe...rs-in-2020-than-any-other-year-in-its-history
 

Jerryc41

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There are a lot of nuances to how this pandemic is affecting businesses and industries. Frankly I'm a little surprised about GC. I know they've been circling the drain for a while now, but the manager at my local store recently told me that they'd had a bunch of really strong months after things reopened here in the summer. I guess they weren't strong enough to make up for weeks or months of no income when you're already falling behind.

Compare the GC news with Fender's recent announcement that they're having a record-breaking year:

https://www.guitarworld.com/news/fe...rs-in-2020-than-any-other-year-in-its-history

I wonder how their online sales were. I have none of their stores near me, so I usually bought online, although I did buy from a store in MA once.
 

Jerryc41

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I wouldn't worry, they'll still be in business. I've found some super deals on their website for used instruments, and the no questions asked 30-day return policy is good.

I don't know how many stores they have, but each one is a huge expense. If they don't have the floor traffic, they don't have the income to pay that expense.
 

EDW

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Last I knew, they also have a number of other businesses they absorbed over the years- Woodwind/Brasswind and Music and Arts among others
 

Cluze

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I find myself with quite a mixed bag of feelings about this. On the one hand, I really don't like these big box retailers like Guitar Center and what they mean for the smaller, independent music stores around the country. I think people are much better off buying from a small local music store where possible and I know that competition from Guitar Center has not been good for those sorts of stores overall.

But at the same time, I know that I feel this way from a place of privilege; I live less than 15 minutes by car from Elderly Instruments. I have one of the best independent fretted instrument stores on the planet basically in my backyard! Most people, in most of the country, don't have that kid of access to that kind of store. For more people, their route to actually putting their hands on an instrument comes from places like Guitar Center.

I expect, based on what I have read, that Guitar Center will go on. They may restructure and close some of their stores, but they will go on. In this economy, and this point in time, with all that is going on in the world, I suppose I should be happy that they aren't just another casualty of the COVID economy and that the jobs for the employees and the instruments for their customers will still be there. But I also want to encourage everyone I talk to to consider buying from the independents whenever they can.
 

Rllink

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I got an email today from GC informing me of all their black Friday deals. It looks like they expect to keep going past Christmas. I don't think they are going anywhere. I expect a change in ownership and not even a stumble. Maybe a few store closings in the process, but I always wonder if they close a store here they are opening one somewhere else. Funny, I get inundated with adds from them and I have never bought so much as a set of strings from them.
 

Jerryc41

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I find myself with quite a mixed bag of feelings about this. On the one hand, I really don't like these big box retailers like Guitar Center and what they mean for the smaller, independent music stores around the country.

I doubt that I could find a store selling good ukes if I drove for an hour. A music store might have one or two brands, probably low to mid range. The only place I've seen many stores selling all kinds of ukuleles is in Hawaii. Online is how I shop now. I've lived in this area for over fifty years, and the selection of stores has always been somewhat limited. Two music stores closed because the couple that owned them got old and retired. When they were in business, we bought from them - a successions of electronic organs for my wife.
 

Jerryc41

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I got an email today from GC informing me of all their black Friday deals. It looks like they expect to keep going past Christmas. I don't think they are going anywhere. I expect a change in ownership and not even a stumble. Maybe a few store closings in the process, but I always wonder if they close a store here they are opening one somewhere else. Funny, I get inundated with adds from them and I have never bought so much as a set of strings from them.

I have their credit card, but I think I used it just once. I'll have to take a look. I might be able to offer them some assistance. :)
 

13down

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If this bankruptcy has anything to do with their massive discounts and coupons right now, I gotta say it is nothing but good news to me. I just got $100 off a brand new Kanilea!
 

Kenn2018

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They are restructuring. I'm sure they'll close a lot of stores and put more emphasis on their e-commerce.

I looked at something a few years ago on their website. Once. I was still getting ads and emails from them a year later!

I think lessons were a big part of their sales mix. That has gone away.
 

rafter

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Like Cluze above, I'm also mixed on Guitar Center. I think big box retailers tend to have two problems: 1) they often don't treat labor well, and 2) they drive out or eat up smaller competition. It should be obvious why the first is a problem. The second is especially problematic when there's increasingly little or no competition in a particular market. I've come across plenty of terrible small local businesses--I don't think bad behavior is unique to big businesses. So I like having some choice.

That said, I did hear stories about Guitar Center not treating their employees well a few years ago. I don't know if things have improved, but I haven't heard those types of stories more recently. I have had mostly good experiences with them in recent times. I hope they treat their employees better. I hope they stick around, but don't grow astronomically, eating up smaller businesses.
 

Jerryc41

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If this bankruptcy has anything to do with their massive discounts and coupons right now, I gotta say it is nothing but good news to me. I just got $100 off a brand new Kanilea!

Please, don't tempt me. : )

EDIT: Wow! They list 22 Kanile'a ukes. I guess the discounts appear at checkout.
 
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plunker

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Just got a black Friday sale catalog from them.