Gibson sells off brands

sawdust123

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Nine years ago, Gibson acquired the Stanton Group and Cerwin Vega among many other businesses. Gibson lost focus and went bankrupt. It was purchased by investors that brought in new management to refocus the brand. Part of this is selling off non guitar businesses.

InMusic (Numark) has picked up what was left of the Stanton brand. Stanton had some good products on the vine that Gibson never allowed to ripen. I think they lost a lot of key talent though over the years. I'm not sure if the Florida office still exists or if that was closed years ago. Interestingly enough in the early 90s, Numark's current CEO was working for Stanton and tried to convince them to buy Numark (who was struggling at the time). Stanton wasn't interested so he quit and bought Numark for himself. InMusic now has Numark, Akai, Alesis, Denon DJ, Rane and M-Audio.

Cerwin Vega was actually bought by Cerwin Vega Mobile (the car stereo company). The two businesses had split up about 13 years ago (before Gibson acquired CV). The KRK brand (studio monitors) was also part of the CV fold for many years and the same speaker designers had worked on both product lines for the last few years. The KRK brand is still owned by Gibson. In fact, it was really the only pro audio brand that Gibson didn't allow to fall into ruins under the previous management. However, when Gibson moved KRK/CV to Nashville, they lost some good people. The primary speaker designer though did make the move. I was ready to buy some KRK monitors for the home a few weeks before they canned my contact there. His replacement was so disorganized, I went with another brand.

The consolidation of the DJ business has been interesting to watch. There are not really many independent brands anymore. Gemini still exists but they are more focused on their consumer products (branded Altec-Lansing) these days. Pioneer DJ was sold again just this year. The new owners, Noritsu, are still in Japan. Their main business has been photo-processing so it will be interesting to see what happens with Pioneer.
 

steve149

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Like the computer industry went through 20 years ago ..
 
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Jas

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Interesting to hear what's going on with Gibson and these other companies. Gibson was originally in my home town, Kalamazoo, MI. My grandfather worked there in the early 1900s.
 

Handinon

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If this is true, InMusic has now picked up the rights to their own DJ software - Deckadance. They can now either kill it, or get it to play well with Engine Prime.
 
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MIXMASTERMACHOM

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Oct 16, 2011
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I know they bought out CV and it went from sugar to s***. Their brand went in the toilet. I heard a pair of tops from them in GC and it looked nice. The sound was beyond ugly. Especially for the price. They stopped selling that speaker. Gibson had a specialty and they should have stuck to what they were successful with. Stanton had some stuff that was ok but not super great stuff. They remind me a cut above Gemini.
 

Albatross

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Sep 7, 2016
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The consolidation in DJ manufacturers has been wild. It's basically InMusic vs. Pioneer.

Early in my career I used a Stanton piece (Next by Stanton to be exact). Then a couple Denon units like the 2600F, and 5000 with Serato Itch.

The first club I got to play an opening set at (Peabody's Virginia Beach) had Denon gear for their early CDJ competitors. But then Denon seemed to abandon that market. Pioneer took over.

And as CDJs have become ubiquitous... if you want to work in a club, there is basically no other choice. In recent years, Denon has come out with some great tech in the SC5000 Prime series. But they have lost so much market share - it's hard to be better enough to win it back. Clubs don't upgrade unless they have to.

If I were talking to a beginner today I'd advise them to learn on Pio gear because it's what they're likely to encounter if they ever choose that channel. If InMusic brands can't get get back into major clubs again... I think they'll have trouble winning market share no matter how good the Rane 70 or SC5000 Prime are.
 

sawdust123

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Pioneer was at $200M/yr and InMusic was close behind at $130M/yr. I wonder how the pandemic is impacting each. InMusic has consumer brands like ION that sell well in Costco and may be less susceptible to the DJ market. The club market has dried up unless wannabes are spending their unemployment checks on toys. We may see InMusic come out with more money left over to innovate on next gen products. Pioneer has always targeted the high end DJ. InMusic has historically targeted the mainstream DJ until their purchases of Rane and Denon. However, I'm not sure they kept the engineering talent and product management that drove the higher end products. Oh well, it doesn't impact me here on the sidelines.
 

Albatross

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Pioneer has always targeted the high end DJ.
I agree with you that they started there. But I think they sell a lot of $250 controllers to beginners because people want to use the brand that the big guys use at festivals.
 
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Ausumm

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Oct 21, 2008
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The consolidation of the DJ business has been interesting to watch.
Like the computer industry went through 20 years ago ..
And the radio industry since the early 2000's.
Any time the desire to reduce costs, gets in the way of the passion to create a good product...