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Old 01-09-2020, 02:01 PM
tomcstokes59 tomcstokes59 is offline
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Default Recent FB post from Dana Bourgeouis regarding Bourgeois + Eastman

Here is a link. https://www.facebook.com/bourgeoisgu...071?__tn__=K-R
Here is the full post:

Dear friends,

2019 was an exciting year at Bourgeois Guitars.

The big news, of course, is our recent partnership with Eastman Music. Many are already aware of the particulars. For those who aren’t, following are a few highlights.

I am still an owner of Bourgeois Guitars. I will continue as CEO into the foreseeable future. For the foreseeable future, Bourgeois Guitars will continue making guitars in Lewiston, Maine, and continue distributing our guitars throughout the US. Eastman has already begun distributing Bourgeois guitars internationally, and will eventually handle most overseas sales.

We are pleased that most folks in the acoustic guitar community are already familiar with the details and ramifications of our recent news. We are also aware that misconceptions still exist. The most common misconception is a rumor that association with Eastman will cause American jobs to be exported to China. This couldn’t be further from the truth.

On the contrary, over the next two years we plan to steadily increase our local workforce. Though Eastman’s distribution efforts have just gotten started, overseas sales have quickly risen to the highest level we’ve seen in years. As a result, we are already hiring—not to keep abreast of workforce turnover, but to keep abreast of current and anticipated demand.

In addition, our two-year development plan calls for acquisition of new light and heavy equipment, all to be purchased exclusively from American suppliers. Plans are also underway to expand our Lewiston facility. I can assure you that such developments unambiguously benefit both the local and US economies. I can also assure you that this level of growth would not be possible without Eastman’s collaboration.

The second most common misconception we’ve heard is that the Bourgeois brand will somehow be cheapened or diluted by association with a maker of less expensive instruments. While it is true that brand degradation would likely occur if we tried to fool customers into thinking that guitars manufactured by Eastman were somehow made by Bourgeois, I can aggressively assure you that we won’t. Allow me to explain how we plan to proceed.

The average Bourgeois guitar retails for about $6,000. The cheapest retails for a little under $4,000. While we have always aspired to build quality guitars at lower price points, the economics of micro-scale US manufacturing dictate that we would lose our shirts if we tried.

As previously announced, Bourgeois and Eastman will address this conundrum by collaborating on a new series of guitars that will be partly produced by each company. Bourgeois will be responsible for design, materials selection, production of voiced tops, final setup and quality control; Eastman will assemble and finish guitars to our specifications. Not only will this collaboration further increase job creation in Lewiston, it will also allow us to crack the $4,000 price barrier, and by a significant margin. US introduction, by the way, is scheduled for the latter part of 2020.

While co-produced guitars will carry a Bourgeois headstock logo, they will also be distinguished by an unambiguous Series designation. Most significantly, the label inside each co-produced guitar will clearly credit Eastman’s role in it’s manufacture.

The slogan, “Made in Lewiston, Maine”, heretofore proudly displayed on all Bourgeois labels, will in the future be reserved only for guitars made entirely in Lewiston, Maine. Guitars made entirely in Lewiston will continue to be built by the same process, to the same designs, and by the same highly skilled craftsman who made them prior to our association with Eastman. The only difference is that we now have access to better equipment, facility and materials, and are already able to provide employees with better benefits. We sincerely believe that under such conditions, the quality of a guitar made in Lewiston should only continue to rise.

Finally, we’ve heard variations on an unfounded rumor that Bourgeois guitars will soon be carried by every US Eastman dealer. Again, not so. While Eastman’s dealership network will undoubtedly help introduce Bourgeois guitars to previously untapped foreign markets, only a few qualified Eastman dealers will be allowed to represent Bourgeois Guitars in the US. Moreover, new dealers will only be opened in markets that do not already support existing Bourgeois dealerships. In short, the Market should expect, as we do, that expansion of our dealership network will continue to be gradual and organic.

Each day I wake up feeling that my best guitars haven’t yet been built. Partnership with Eastman only reinforces that belief. I judge the quality of a guitar primarily by the music it makes in the hands of its player, and by the joy it brings to player and listener like. While alliance with Eastman may put Bourgeois guitars in the hands of more players, the rest is still up to me and my Lewiston, Maine, team. We continue to take that responsibility as seriously as ever.

Please help spread these messages to anyone who has not heard them. Thank you in advance for your continued support.

Sincerely,

Dana Bourgeois
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Old 01-09-2020, 02:10 PM
29er 29er is offline
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Sounds like a win-win.
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Old 01-09-2020, 02:24 PM
619TF 619TF is offline
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Thanks to the OP who posted this for those of us who value retaining what we can of our privacy by never going to FB for anything.
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Old 01-09-2020, 02:30 PM
Tnfiddler Tnfiddler is offline
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I saw that Earlier today and I’m glad he came out with all the details! I’ll probably add one Of their guitars to my collection at some point because I’m a HUGE fan of his guitars and put my Slope D Banjo Killer up there with the best of them!!
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Old 01-09-2020, 02:34 PM
zmf zmf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tomcstokes59 View Post
While co-produced guitars will carry a Bourgeois headstock logo, they will also be distinguished by an unambiguous Series designation. Most significantly, the label inside each co-produced guitar will clearly credit Eastman’s role in it’s manufacture.
If I understand correctly, guitars initiated by Bourgeois, and then assembled by Eastman, will have a Bourgeois headstock logo, but otherwise differentiated from those made entirely in Maine. These will be the "hybrids".
I wonder if a "hybrid" logo was ever considered. Like the Martin Shenandoah logo.

Guitars made entirely by Eastman will continue to have the Eastman headstock logo.

Last edited by zmf; 01-09-2020 at 02:59 PM.
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Old 01-09-2020, 02:36 PM
Jaden Jaden is offline
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Sounds like the American workers will benefit from this - I’m always amazed by the common assumption that comparatively high price and comparatively low production numbers equates to healthy profits - nothing could be further from the truth - to be able to piggyback onto a high production operation can result in significant benefits to workers and much more comfortable profit margins - by comfortable I mean future job security.
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Old 01-09-2020, 03:05 PM
ataylor ataylor is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zmf View Post
I wonder if a "hybrid" logo was ever considered.
I hope not — introducing more complexity into the Bourgeois brand identity along with this new partnership and product offering wouldn’t be the right move.

I like that Taylor and Martin are confident enough in their Mexican-made guitars that they get — more or less — the same logo and visual hallmarks of their USA-made counterparts. I hope Bourgeois has the same level of pride in their entry-level line and that it’s reflected in the quality.

Dana B’s note is refreshingly straightforward and transparent in a time when it would be easy for someone in his position to rely solely on the marketing copywriters and product managers to lace messaging like this with buzzwords and corporatespeak.

It truly does seem like a win-win for both companies, and ultimately, consumers. I hope this pushes some of the other smaller-shop brands to offer more accessible instruments, and I hope it keeps the big brands on their toes. Looking forward to see what these new guitars look and sound like and at what price point.
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Old 01-09-2020, 03:23 PM
SlopeD SlopeD is offline
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sounds awesome, can't wait to try some.
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Old 01-09-2020, 03:31 PM
aknow aknow is offline
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Dear Mr. Bourgeois: Very little of what gets out of China is "organic". I see the beginning of the end of what was a fine company. Copying what PRS is doing, and lowering the quality and expanding the production. Good luck.
I've tried several of your guitars and they were exquisite. I often wonder why I never see many notable guitarists playing or promoting them, and they're almost impossible to find in stores.
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Old 01-09-2020, 03:41 PM
rokdog49 rokdog49 is offline
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First of all, thanks for posting this.

What if the Eastman stuff sounds and looks as good or better than the ones made in Lewiston? The only thing that would differentiate the Lewiston ones would be price and country of origin. That’s pretty risky or so it seems as cannibalization could occur.
On the other hand, it appears both parties want to move into a price point neither can attain alone and still sell guitars.
Seems to me Eastman might be the bigger beneficiary here in the long run. That is except for the fact that Dana could become a wealthy man.
Personally, I don’t care as I don’t, nor probably will ever own a guitar that costs $3000 - 4000 or more.
Now $2500....hmmm maybe.
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Last edited by rokdog49; 01-09-2020 at 03:50 PM.
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Old 01-09-2020, 03:53 PM
Denny B Denny B is offline
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" it will also allow us to crack the $4,000 price barrier, and by a significant margin. US introduction, by the way, is scheduled for the latter part of 2020."

Does this infer a sub $4K Bourgeois/Eastman "co-produced" guitar? That's still fairly pricey.
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Last edited by Denny B; 01-09-2020 at 03:59 PM.
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Old 01-09-2020, 04:45 PM
zmf zmf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ataylor View Post
I hope not — introducing more complexity into the Bourgeois brand identity along with this new partnership and product offering wouldn’t be the right move.
My train of thought was that Dana wants there to be a distinction between "real" Bourgeois guitars and the "hybrids". Whether this is done with a different logo or a "unambiguous Series designation" is, of course, up to him.

I guess I'm speaking as a traditionalist, but my druthers would be to have the current Bourgeois logo only on the "all done in Maine" guitars. This might provide less complexity, not more.
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Old 01-09-2020, 04:55 PM
merlin666 merlin666 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zmf View Post
I guess I'm speaking as a traditionalist, but my druthers would be to have the current Bourgeois logo only on the "all done in Maine" guitars. This might provide less complexity, not more.
Hopefully there won't be too many people who buy a "value" Bourgeois looking only at the large Headstock logo, and then be disappointed once they discover the small print "Made in China" on the inside label.
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Old 01-09-2020, 04:59 PM
Goat Mick Goat Mick is offline
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I see this as a way to put Dana's designs into the hands of more players. We all know that Eastman is capable of extraordinary build quality so it's not like he grabbed the lowest bidder to produce the guitars. I think we're going to see some really great guitars get into the hands of guys that couldn't even imagine affording a US made Bourgeouis. I think this is a very positive thing and I don't see a reason to dilute the brand name by changing what's on the headstock. A clearly marked inside label will let people know the difference in the US product and the import. I'm hoping this new line is so good, that you would never know the difference any other way.
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Old 01-09-2020, 05:17 PM
SongwriterFan SongwriterFan is offline
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So they're going to assemble, brace, and voice the tops here in the US, ship those tops over to China, have the Chinese assemble the guitar, then ship it back for final setup?

Is anything else gonna be done in the US?
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