Gibson Brands, Inc. is facing serious debt issues that could cause the iconic brand to go out of business.
Gibson Brands, Inc. has been around since 1902 and became iconic 50 years later with the introduction of the Les Paul guitar and the Flying V – two models favored by rockstars throughout the years.
Gibson has been the guitar chosen by rock gods including Tom Petty, Keith Richards, Jimi Hendrix, Eddie Van Halen, Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top, Paul Stanley, Richie Sambora, Angus Young, and Chris Cornell. Legendary guitarist Slash was named Gibson’s first ever Global Ambassador this past year, after working with Gibson from the early days of his career.
The company has annual revenues exceeding $1 billion but is facing upcoming bond repayments totaling $375 million by July 23rd, with a further $145 million due if the first amount is not received. CFO Bill Lawrence recently left the company and the options facing CEO and Owner Henry Juszkiewicz looked “likely to sideline” him. A deal with equity firm GSO Capital Partners, which brought in an emergency $130 million loan last year, had left some holders of the $375 million bonds worried about the security of their investment and made worse by a “lack of clarity” from Gibson.
Gary Clark Jr.