Gibson has announced that it will lay off about five per cent of its worldwide corporate staff – about 50 people – in response to the economic downturn, which is affecting sales of its musical instruments, MMR Magazine has reported.
“We regret that the company had to reduce our work force to meet the economic challenges faced by our industry," explained Gibson CEO Henry Juszkiewicz, in a statement. We believe our streamlined team of talented people will continue to serve our valuable customers in an increasingly excellent fashion.”
The company said that worldwide sales of musical instruments in the product categories it competes in had dropped more than 20 per cent in the first quarter of 2009, compared with the same period last year.
Gibson is the latest in a series of US-based MI companies to announce job cuts. Musicincmag.com reports that large multiple retailer Guitar Center has laid off roughly 60 employees from its corporate office, while Roland US cut an undisclosed portion of its work force in January due to the tough economy.
“We’ve had to make adjustments to our staffing in response to changes in the business environment, and we will continue to do that as necessary,” said Dennis Houlihan, president of Roland US.
Yamaha Corporation of America also reported making several cost-cutting measures in late February to combat the economic conditions, among them, the laying off of five per cent of its employees.
“Reducing our work force is extremely difficult and we had taken every cost-saving measure before resorting to this action,” said senior vice president Tom Sumner. “Still, it became necessary for us to resize our company based on the current economic reality.”