The sale of The Woodwind & The Brasswind is back on-again.
With approval from a U.S. bankruptcy court, Musician’s Friend, a unit of Guitar Center Inc., will pay about $29.9 million for substantially all of the assets of musical instruments retailer The Woodwind & The Brasswind, Guitar Center said. Musician’s Friend will also assume approximately $2 million of specifically identified accrued liabilities.
The acquisition includes the two retail web sites of The Woodwind & The Brasswind, wwbw.com and Music123.com. “This acquisition will enable us to further expand the already strong combo instrument business at Musician’s Friend as well as build out our direct response band and orchestra business,” says Marty Albertson, chairman and CEO of Guitar Center. The acquisition is expected to close this month.
Musician’s Friend is No. 50 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide; The Woodwind & The Brasswind is No. 317.
The acquisition follows two earlier efforts by Guitar Center and Steinway Musical Instruments Inc., a manufacturer of musical instruments, to buy The Woodwind & The Brasswind. On Dec. 15, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Indiana in South Bend named Steinway the lead bidder after it agreed to pay $40 million, causing Guitar Center to terminate an earlier bid. But last month, Steinway terminated its agreement to acquire the music products retailer, noting that due diligence had discovered it could not meet certain conditions to close the transaction.
Guitar Center operates more than 90 stores in addition to MusiciansFriend.com and GuitarCenter.com.
Woodwind & Brasswind’s Internet marketing manager, Cory Nielsen, will speak at the Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition, June 4-7 in San Jose in a session entitled Harnessing the Power of Search Engines: Mastering the Complexities of Pay per Click and Optimization.