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Eastern Academy of Management 2018 Annual Meeting

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Building and Leading a Cultural Enterprise. Martin Guitar and C. F. Martin IV in 2018

Martin Guitar -- more formally, C. F. Martin & Co., Inc. -- is a globally-known manufacturer of guitars and guitar strings, located in Nazareth, Pennsylvania, a small town in the Lehigh Valley of Eastern Pennsylvania. In 2016, Martin Guitar had $124 million in revenue, 1,110 employees in Nazareth and Mexico, a highly regarded brand name, and a profound influence on American and global music dating back to the mid-19th century. Since 1986, Martin Guitar has been led by sixth-generation C. F. Martin IV (Chris). The musical instrument marketplace is always evolving as tastes and technologies bubble up. Manufacturing technology has had to adapt. Old competitors have fallen, and new ones have emerged. With assistance from his customers, his Board, and the Martin Guitar labor force, Chris faces the latest examples of a continuing series of challenges that he has navigated.

Roland Kushner
Muhlenberg College
United States

Samuel Thompson
Muhlenberg College
United States


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