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Guitar Center Ramps Up B2B Biz, Acquires AVDG

Guitar Center expands business-to-business capabilities with AVDG acquisition

Westlake Village, CA (January 2, 2018)—In a move seen as the beginning of a planned aggressive expansion of its Business Solutions Group, Guitar Center has acquired San Francisco Bay Area-based Audio Visual Design Group (AVDG), aiming to use the new arm as its entry into offering integrated solutions.

The acquisition, announced in late December, is expected to serve as the kickoff of a concerted move into the B2B waters. “With the changes in the marketplace, we’ve decided to apply additional resources to expand our presence to service clientele who are looking for system design and installation of audio, video and lighting solutions and beyond,” said Ron Japinga, president and CEO of Guitar Center.

AVDG offers system design and installation in both corporate and residential market sectors, and will operate as a dedicated arm of the Business Solutions Group, allowing the division to provide personalized, account-based services. Privately owned, the San Rafael / San Jose, CA-based design-build firm has spent the last two decades specializing in audio-visual systems for commercial and residential spaces worldwide. More than 80 people make up AVDG’s staff, ranging from programmers and installers to design engineers and technicians from such diverse sectors as gaming, high-tech, financial, legal, health care, education and hospitality.

According to Doug Carnell, Guitar Center vice president of Business Solutions, “Guitar Center has been seeking opportunities to bolster our Business Solutions Group and we have found an ideal partner in AVDG. This mutually beneficial relationship will provide AVDG’s team the vast resources offered by Guitar Center, while opening up Guitar Center’s Business Solutions Group to opportunities in the commercial and residential market sectors.”

The acquisition will not only provide Guitar Center with a footprint in the integration market, however, as AVDG sees the move as beneficial not only for itself but most importantly, for its customers. Robert Scharffer, AVDG’s CEO, noted, “Just as Guitar Center is not your typical musical instrument retailer, AVDG is not just another integrator, and as such we want to continue and grow what we have built. Guitar Center will give us access to additional financial and operational resources, offering new avenues of growth and new opportunities to better support our clients.”

Guitar Center •