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Fender to Acquire Kaman Music

Fender Musical Instruments (FMIC) entered a definitive agreement to acquire Kaman Music on Oct. 29. FMIC agreed to purchase Kaman Music, a wholly owned subsidiary of parent company Kaman Corp., for approximately $117 million in cash, subject to specified post-closing purchase price adjustments. Closing is expected to occur prior to January 1, 2008.

Kaman Music is a preeminent independent U.S. distributor of musical instruments and accessories, offering more than 20,000 products. It owns Ovation Guitars, Latin Percussion and Toca hand percussion products, Gibraltar Hardware, Genz Benz Amplification and Hamer Guitars. It serves as the exclusive U.S. sales representative for Sabian Cymbals and exclusive worldwide distributor of Takamine Guitars and Gretsch Drums.

“We are delighted to welcome the Kaman Music Corp. into the Fender family,” said Bill Mendello, chairman and CEO of FMIC. “[Kaman Music] is one of the most respected companies in the musical instrument industry. We have very similar cultures that have been developed over many years. The distribution expertise that Kaman Music brings to the music marketplace will complement and strengthen FMIC’s service to its dealers and consumers.”

Kaman Music will continue to be led by current president Edward Miller. Miller has 35 years of experience with Kaman, having joined the company in 1972 and later serving as executive vice president and COO. He was appointed president of Kaman Music in June 2007, following the retirement of former president Robert Saunders.

“There is great synergy between Kaman Music and Fender, both of which are deeply rooted in the long history and colorful culture of popular music,” Miller said. “The acquisition of Kaman Music by Fender forms the most dynamic partnership in the music industry. I believe that our collective customers will benefit greatly from this combination.”

“FMIC is a proven steward of great brands, and the acquisition of [Kaman Music] is consistent with this long-term growth strategy,” said Matt Janopaul, president and COO of FMIC. “We have great respect for what [Kaman Music’s] seasoned management team has accomplished over the past 40-plus years. This is an amazing company that today, under Ed Miller’s leadership, has numerous opportunities both domestically and internationally. We look forward to providing [Kaman Music] with the resources to accomplish these goals.”

Fender was advised by the law firm Sullivan & Cromwell LLP. Kaman was advised by Lazard and the law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, LLP.;