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CEO and founder Andrew Wass, was a sound recording engineer in 1995 when he identified an opportunity to supply small recording studios and educational establishments with personal computer based digital recording solutions.
In 2003 Andrew began to research the potential to retail own-brand beginner level musical instruments, with the intention of opening up the market by selling at lower prices than traditional music shops. After visiting several international exhibitions in the USA and China, Andrew placed a bulk order for guitars and listed them for sale on the then new gear4music.com website. The website generated £0.65 million of sales in its first full year of trading.
Gear4music has grown consistently since launch and, in March 2012 private equity investor Key Capital Partners invested £3.4 million in the Group. This investment provided additional funding to develop further the ecommerce platform and invest in the Group’s expansion into Europe. Following this investment, the Group launched 18 country- specific websites for customers in Ireland, France, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovenia and Slovakia.
Following a relocation in November 2013 to Gear4music’s current premises, a new 9,000 square feet showroom was opened, with distribution and storage capacity being increased significantly.
On the 3rd June 2015, the group successfully listed in the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) of the London Stock Exchange, generating net proceeds of £9m after expenses. £4.6m was used to repay Key Capital Partners debt in full, leaving £4.4m of growth capital.