Boston, MA (November 22, 2017)—After 30 years, music/DAW software company Cakewalk has been shut down. The announcement came Friday, November 17, from parent company Gibson Brands, which said Cakewalk was ceasing new product development, stating the move was made to “better align with [Gibson Brands’] acquisition strategy that is heavily focused on growth in the global consumer electronics audio business.” Gibson Brands acquired Cakewalk in late 2013.
Initially founded in 1987 as Twelve Tone Systems, Cakewalk was an early pioneer of MIDI sequence software, over time growing to develop products like its respected SONAR DAW, various virtual instruments and effects, and a handful of entry-level musical consumer products. Following eight years of growing collaborations, Roland invested in the company in 2003, eventually taking a majority stake in 2008. Cakewalk was sold to Gibson Brands four years ago, a purchase made with the intention of forming a new brand, TASCAM Professional Software, that would publish Cakewalk products and develop joint products with TASCAM.
Cakewalk reamined largely based around SONAR, which it moved to a subscription format via a “rolling updates initiative,” issuing 12 updates a year. Nonetheless, the company continued to explore new paradigms and was releasing new products as recently as late September, when it debuted the fledgling Momentum platform, a hybrid smartdevice/PC-based four-track DAW.
In a statement on Cakewalk’s website, CTO Noel Borthwick, a 19-year veteran of the company, assured customers “Cakewalk's servers will continue to operate, you will still have access to all of your online assets, and your software will continue to work normally. A dedicated team has been established during this transition period to continue to serve the Cakewalk community.”