- GC veteran Gene Joly appointed to accelerate growth at Musician’s Friend division.
- Longtime store ops executive Kevin Kazubowski to succeed Joly as new Senior Vice President of Stores for Guitar Center.
(September 4, 2013 - Los Angeles, CA) – Guitar Center (GC), the world’s largest retailer of guitars, amplifiers, drums, keyboards, recording, live sound, DJ and lighting equipment, has named longtime GC executive Gene Joly as the new President of its Musician’s Friend (MF) division. MF is the largest direct-response retailer of musical instruments and professional audio equipment in the U.S. The announcement was made by Mike Pratt, Guitar Center Chief Executive Officer, and further underscores GC’s long-term strategic multi-channel business model.
In his new position, Joly will be responsible for guiding the direction of Musician’s Friend while capitalizing on his extensive experience in merchandising, vendor relations, distribution, supply management and direct marketing. Prior to his appointment, Joly was Guitar Center’s Executive Vice President of Stores, a position he held since 2008. Replacing Gene as the new Senior Vice President of stores will be longtime GC ops vet Kevin Kazubowski.
“There’s no doubt that Gene is the man to lead Musician’s Friend and our Music 123 Business into a bold new direction as 2014 approaches. Over his 38-year career in the M.I. industry, he has earned the respect and trust of our entire organization and countless others across our industry. I’m looking forward to watching Gene put his own unique stamp on the company as its next President, and I wish him continued success.” Mike Pratt – CEO, Guitar Center
"The opportunity to lead Musician's Friend is both exciting and bittersweet for me. Over the last 5 years, I've been hard at work on a host of transformational business projects with the help of an exceptional Guitar Center team. These folks mean a great deal to me. At the same time I relish the opportunity to work with my new MF team, which includes some of the all-time greats from the Medford, OR campus. We're going to take the direct business to a whole new level."Gene Joly – President, Musician’s Friend
About Musician’s Friend
Musician's Friend, Inc. is a global top 50 Internet retailer and the leading direct marketer of musical instruments in the United States. Musician's Friend is a wholly owned subsidiary of Guitar Center, the largest retailer of musical equipment. Musician's Friend, Inc., was founded in 1983. With more than 70,000 unique products for sale, the company covers a wide range of musical needs, including guitars, basses, amplifiers, keyboards, live sound, recording equipment, drums, percussion, woodwind, brass and orchestral stringed instruments, as well as related accessories that are marketed through musiciansfriend.com, its print catalogs and contact centers.
About Guitar Center
Guitar Center is the world’s largest retailer of guitars, amplifiers, drums, keyboards, recording, live sound, DJ and lighting equipment. Our retail store subsidiary presently operates more than 250 Guitar Center stores across the U.S. We are also the largest direct response retailer of musical instruments in the United States through our wholly owned subsidiary, Musician's Friend, Inc. In addition, our Music & Arts division operates more than 120 stores specializing in band instruments for sale and rental, serving students, teachers, band directors and college professors. More information on Guitar Center can be found by visiting the company's Website at www.guitarcenter.com.