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Best of luck, GM Dennis O'Brien


guitarstrummer

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I mentioned in an earlier post that there were going to be some changes made. This guy was the worst thing to happen to Gibson/Montana. He is the guy responsible for the loss of Ren Ferguson and he is the guy responsible for the huge increrase in inventory that is choking the life out of Gibson. They may never recover from this guy and they will for sure spend the next year or two trying to sell his excesses. Not fair to kick a guy when he's down. Sorry

 

There will be more to this sooner rather than later.

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I mentioned in an earlier post that there were going to be some changes made. This guy was the worst thing to happen to Gibson/Montana. He is the guy responsible for the loss of Ren Ferguson and he is the guy responsible for the huge increrase in inventory that is choking the life out of Gibson. They may never recover from this guy and they will for sure spend the next year or two trying to sell his excesses. Not fair to kick a guy when he's down. Sorry

 

There will be more to this sooner rather than later.

 

Do you happen to know any of the details of the excess inventory? In other words, is there some particular model or models they have too much of, or some product line or any other pattern?

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I don't think there is anything wrong or significantly different about the guitars made while Dennis was GM. Apparently he discarded the previous business model of only making guitars that were already ordered and not keeping any inventory on hand in a warehouse.

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I mentioned in an earlier post that there were going to be some changes made. This guy was the worst thing to happen to Gibson/Montana. He is the guy responsible for the loss of Ren Ferguson and he is the guy responsible for the huge increrase in inventory that is choking the life out of Gibson. They may never recover from this guy and they will for sure spend the next year or two trying to sell his excesses. Not fair to kick a guy when he's down. Sorry

 

There will be more to this sooner rather than later.

 

thanks ,

 

I'm glad he has exited then !!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

JC

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Do you happen to know any of the details of the excess inventory? In other words, is there some particular model or models they have too much of, or some product line or any other pattern?

 

 

My question as well. I might be interested in helping "relieve" them of their excess inventory........if the price is right.

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There is nothing wrong with the inventory. In fact from what I've seen it's some of Gibson's best work. I don't have any source that knows the inventory available but I can only imagine that it is a balance of all models.

 

The guy did nothing wrong except make to much inventory without selling it. Remember that he is just another in the long list of guys that tried to keep Nashville and the talking heads there happy. His biggest mistake was to overbuild and under sell. Simple as that. He wasn't from the music industry and had no idea how to deal with the music dealers and the customers. The downturn in the economy was acting against him as well. He has no one on staff that knows the music sales game. Its a delicate tightrope these managers have to walk and very few of them are successful.

 

One huge mistake, in my opinion, was the J-35. He was making a great guitar at a bargain price to stimulate sales. It didn't pull the other inventory along with it so all he did was sell a lot of loss leader guitars. I would think that if you want a J-35 now would be the time to buy one as they probably won't be around for long. Just a hunch but.......the price will probably have to go up.

 

Don't expect any fire sales or big sales pushes. It's not Henry's way. He will probably just put the production back in line with the sales and reduce the inventory. The new manager will have a big job on his hands and I doubt that he will have any more success that the last guy.

 

The big tell in the situation was when Gibson/Montana stopped selling custom guitars and special orders. When you are swamped with inventory that isn't selling the last thing you need is to make custom guitars instead of selling your overstock. His plan was to sell off the inventory but he didn't have anyone to sell the guitars. If there is a new GM and I have my doubts about that the new GM will have to fix his marketing and sales team. The production team is smoking hot and running just fine. Maybe the best in their short history.

 

Don't be surprised if Henry does something drastic.

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Gee that sounds drastic, Hogeye. Almost as though the acoustic division is going to be sold or closed down. I hope not because they are still making great instruments. Maybe they could lure back Ren Ferguson and Bill Gonder?

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Gee that sounds drastic, Hogeye. Almost as though the acoustic division is going to be sold or closed down. I hope not because they are still making great instruments. Maybe they could lure back Ren Ferguson and Bill Gonder?

 

I doubt that they would ever sell the division. And as to the other. You would have a better chance of seeing God.

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I'm not claiming to be some sort of business genius but when I saw the j35 and its price I wondered about the potential cheapening of the Gibson name . While its just the best thing for a guy with £1200 who wants a Gibson it removes some of the dream guitar qualities that a Gibson has.

 

If Lamborghini started making hatchbacks the name would not be quite the same

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I'm not claiming to be some sort of business genius but when I saw the j35 and its price I wondered about the potential cheapening of the Gibson name . While its just the best thing for a guy with £1200 who wants a Gibson it removes some of the dream guitar qualities that a Gibson has.

 

If Lamborghini started making hatchbacks the name would not be quite the same

 

Dunno man, I think it's as easy to argue from the other angle, who would have thought you'd get import guitars from the far east asking prices in the 1000-1200 region? Who ever thought you would pay 2-3K for a guitar from Japan? I see what you mean about the aspirational stuff though as any kid seeing their favourite up there with a Gibson might be enough to make that his dream guitar and it'll have its associated price, but, like everything, they're priced to the market tolerance level, no more no less.

 

I don't see the J-35 as cheapening the brand, OK, they've stripped back on appointments and whatnot, but it's a solid guitar, and not the first budget/student model they've ever done, so it's a segment filler. By comparison, HPL & stratabond as used by the M-brand for me cheapens their brand. They are not great materials.

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I am not seeing this as stripped down or student model , other than no burst,

They got the pickguard stuck on correctly to boot, the brace pattern is the aj/tv type. Cool

I like the bridge as well.

Vintage white button tuners , and even if not vintage correct, that banner just looks great.

I was stumped at the price , I do wonder if Gibson can make profit on it if they sell a ton of them?

The economy is still not in the best shape , I work more for less as do many I know ,

 

Getting inventory moving is pretty simple , get the dealers into the 12 month payment plan again.

Stop bullshitting people, they are smarter that you think.

 

And for hevens sake admit lamnated parts are a thing of the past, discount the ones that are not and move away from

What you had to do to get through some bad times at Gibson. You tell people till your blue in face

It's just the same , but my friend no one is buying it, and it is gathering dust.

Tap tone Not the same, looks not the same , precived value not the same.

I am sure gibson could make a j45 out of hardened dog poop and it would still sound like a j45,

Getting someone to buy it is somthing else.

 

Getting the freeking web site to reflect what your selling would be a good idea , the j45 tv still lists Madagascar rosewood as what's used on the fretboard .

In light of all that went down why would you still advertise something like that? Probable cuase for yet another raid?

I for one find your tone wood notes an insult, and I am not alone.

 

 

Show me a tap tone of a laminated bridge or fretboard that rings like solid ill believe yet it still looks cheep.

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... He is the guy responsible for the loss of Ren Ferguson ....

 

Thanks for the interesting comments Hogeye. And I always thought there was more to Ren's departure than just "moving on". Since he went to Fender, I've noticed more higher end acoustics being produced - so he's back somewhere in the process of guitar production.

 

 

.

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Bear with me on this.....Let's put things in perspective, when you compare Gibson/Martin dreadnaught/Jumbo models, which are more or less in competition with each other (I know, I know, they are NOT the same guitar, but look at the MSRP's, and MAP's, and try to argue that they are NOT!) It would be safe to say that the J-35 and D1GT are the "budget" versions of the J-45 and D-18??? Martin also makes MANY other body shapes in their "1" series. It's clear to me, that the economy and competition from higher quality asian import guitars are pushing American manufacturer's to offer a discounted line. So, I'm not arguing that the quality of the "1" series is equal to the D-35, but they are both American made, with great tradition, all solid wood guitars with similar specs of materials. It can also be argued that the J-35 is NOT a budget guitar, but a stand alone guitar on it's own merits. The thing is, that I've played both J-35 (fantastic sounding guitar!) and the D-1 which is also a very good sounding guitar, in the Martin tradition. I much prefer the J-35, so light and responsive, just a great guitar. The point is, I feel the company is just responding to the Market, all this talk of the J-35 signaling the demise of the company, may just be a little premature....

 

Martin D-18........MSRP: $2,899.00 MAP:$2,199.00

Gibson J-45........MSRP: $2,836.00 MAP:$2,199.00

 

Gibson J-35.........MSRP: $2,190.00 MAP:$1,69900

Martin D1GT........MSRP: $1,249.00 MAP:$949.00

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The Martin D1-GT is a stripped down model with Sapele, not mahogany, richlite fingerboard and bridge, the neck is stratabond, the bracing is 5/16" modified x hybrid (not same as a standard martins), back and sides are satin finish, etc, etc. This does not come even close to the J-35, which is a standard Gibson in every way, just a little plain on the ornamentation. The problem with the J-35 is the company loses money on them.

 

Bear with me on this.....Let's put things in perspective, when you compare Gibson/Martin dreadnaught/Jumbo models, which are more or less in competition with each other (I know, I know, they are NOT the same guitar, but look at the MSRP's, and MAP's, and try to argue that they are NOT!) It would be safe to say that the J-35 and D1GT are the "budget" versions of the J-45 and D-18??? Martin also makes MANY other body shapes in their "1" series. It's clear to me, that the economy and competition from higher quality asian import guitars are pushing American manufacturer's to offer a discounted line. So, I'm not arguing that the quality of the "1" series is equal to the D-35, but they are both American made, with great tradition, all solid wood guitars with similar specs of materials. It can also be argued that the J-35 is NOT a budget guitar, but a stand alone guitar on it's own merits. The thing is, that I've played both J-35 (fantastic sounding guitar!) and the D-1 which is also a very good sounding guitar, in the Martin tradition. I much prefer the J-35, so light and responsive, just a great guitar. The point is, I feel the company is just responding to the Market, all this talk of the J-35 signaling the demise of the company, may just be a little premature....

 

Martin D-18........MSRP: $2,899.00 MAP:$2,199.00

Gibson J-45........MSRP: $2,836.00 MAP:$2,199.00

 

Gibson J-35.........MSRP: $2,190.00 MAP:$1,69900

Martin D1GT........MSRP: $1,249.00 MAP:$949.00

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You're right Jerry, the Martin doesn't even come close to the same specs as the J-35. I could be mistaken but I thought the "1" series Martins used to be made in Mexico?? Could be wrong on that. Anyway, I agree with Hogeye in that they're probably going to have to raise the price on the J-35 or eliminate it from the line. It's a great guitar so I think they'd probably raise the price before getting rid of it.

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Let's all remain positive and know that Gibson will get a new GM and he will figure out the production/sales problem. I hope they continue the J-35 and can keep the selling price down. My fingers are crossed for them and I think it might be time to head for Music Villa and get another Dove.

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The problem with the J-35 is the company loses money on them.

 

The throw a sprat to catch a whale business model might work for beans, nappies and instant coffees from supermarket chains, but even the 'gassiest' of buyers are not buying multiple guitars per week/month. If they are it's in very short bursts, the model doesn't work when it's collection over consumption. They sell long term non-perishable items, it just doesn't work. If you mean that Gibson does not make its usual ratio of profit per unit from the J-35 line, perhaps, but that is a very different thing.

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The Martin D1-GT is a stripped down model with Sapele, not mahogany, richlite fingerboard and bridge, the neck is stratabond, the bracing is 5/16" modified x hybrid (not same as a standard martins), back and sides are satin finish, etc, etc. This does not come even close to the J-35, which is a standard Gibson in every way, just a little plain on the ornamentation. The problem with the J-35 is the company loses money on them.

Once again Jerry you jumped to conclusions. I never compared the to each other, I praise the J-35 as the better guitar, and the point I was making is that BOTH the two companies were responding to the Market with lower cost guitars Do you ever loosen up?

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Again...not comparing, just noticing that there are budget guitars now being offered in response to the market. But i do agree, D-16 probably a good comparison to D-35. You know there is a lot of brand loyality on the Gibson forum AND in general, by Gibson owners, and for a good reason. They make a great product. I read that cigarette companies go to state fairs and such, to give out free samples of their goods, especially to 18 year olds, because they know that once hooked, the smpker will usually stay with one brand for life....no matter how shortened it is. Gibson was perhaps, missing a good entry level guitar to attract new guitar players. I don't know how anyone would know that the J-35 is "losing" money, BUT, it may be serving a great purpose of allowing younger, less flush, buyers an entry into the wonderful world we call Gibson. Many of us on the forum are more-than-one Gibson owners, and appreciate the quality and sound of the product...some of us MULTIPLE times. So this entry level D-35 owner, may become a lifelong Gibson fan, and future multiple Gibson owner, based on this one initial purchase. So, if the profit margins are slim in the beginning, it still may be a good business plan in the long run. When I first played one, I wanted it, it was that good, and if I was a beginner, I would clearly choose the J-35 over the Martin D-16 or any of the similar priced asian imports I've tried. Heck, guys with J-45's on this forum are STILL buying the J-35's! So, again, Cudos to Gibson on this decision.

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