Next Chapter in Fender History Balances a Player-First Legacy with Digital Product Progression
With almost 70 years of Southern California history, Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) is returning key positions to California and expanding in the heart of Hollywood, celebrating the grand opening of its new office space on September 22, 2016. The world’s leading maker of guitars and amps has a new location on L.A.’s Sunset Boulevard, which has yielded some of the most celebrated legends, venues, and moments in music history. Fender has established a contemporary workspace purposefully designed to take its legacy into the future.
Fender joins one of California’s iconic addresses at Columbia Square, which has served as the backdrop for some of culture’s most influential moments. Originally built in 1938 and designed by renowned architect William Lescaze in the International Modernist style, its state-of-the-art recording studios and theaters cemented Hollywood as the entertainment center of the universe. Today’s Columbia Square, brought to life by Kilroy Realty Corporation, represents a modern interpretation of a timeless studio lot, boasting premier workspaces and collaborative indoor and outdoor environments, with neighbors including concert venues, music label and management offices, and entertainment studios within a walkable radius.
“We’ve made guitars in California for nearly 70 years; Fender’s heart beats in Southern California. We’re thrilled to embark on the next chapter of Fender’s history in our new home at Columbia Square,” said Andy Mooney, CEO Fender Musical Instruments Corp. “Having a base on Sunset Boulevard, in a location so central to the vibrant music scene in Los Angeles, will enable Fender to serve current and future players at higher levels than ever before.”
“Being in the heart of the musical community, with close proximity to our USA production facility is fantastic. It makes collaborating with artists really organic,” sad Richard McDonald, EVP Fender Brand. “The more time we spend with players the more capable we become at creating inspiring relevant products.”
Designed by Rapt Studio, Fender’s office consists of two spaces located at the intersection of Sunset Blvd. and N. Gower St. The Executive, Marketing, Creative and Digital teams are housed in the 1575 N. Gower space which boasts 24,574 square feet. The entire office is LEED-certified and features an open concept layout, encouraging a synergistic, fast-paced work environment for its employees. Fender uses the workbench system for office furniture that includes 40% of are height-adjustable desks featuring height adjustment capabilities to promote individual well-being. Though all office elements are new, Fender has maintained its longstanding tradition of naming conference rooms after famous guitarists such as Chrissie Hynde, Ritchie Blackmore, Pete Townshend, Frank Zappa and Kurt Cobain.
At 1525 N. Gower, the ‘Bungalow,’ a 9,001 square foot feature structure in the Columbia Square campus, is a symbolic representation of Fender’s dedication to their products and artists. The walls are adorned with light boxes featuring a rotation of notable Fender artists’ images, and lined with new products from the Electric and Acoustic categories; Amplifier and Pro Audio tools are featured throughout the space as product teams develop new innovations. Workstations for product development encourage hands-on R&D, while a plug-and-play studio on the first floor allows employees, guests and artists to test equipment as well as their own sonic skills.
The move to Hollywood speaks to Fender’s foray into digital products and services, with over 100 seats dedicated to the new Digital team, signaling a significant investment in the future of the brand and the instrument industry at large. The new team has been largely drawn from the growing pool of digital talent available in L.A. With a suite of digital products aimed at supporting players at every stage of their development, Fender’s new Hollywood location is key to Fender’s future growth.
# # #
About Fender Musical Instruments Corporation:
Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) is one of the world’s leading musical instrument manufacturers, marketers and distributors, whose portfolio of brands includes Fender®, Squier®, Gretsch® fretted instruments, Jackson®, EVH® and Charvel® among others.