Fort Wayne, IN (July 7, 2021)—Sweetwater has announced a strategic investment from private equity firm Providence Equity Partners. Financial terms of the transaction have not been disclosed.
Since its beginnings as a mobile recording studio in the back of a VW microbus in 1979, Sweetwater has become a major online retailer leader serving millions of MI and pro audio customers. In early 2021, the company announced it had achieved $1 billion in annual revenue, served over 1.5 million unique customers and added over 400 new jobs last year.
Chuck Surack, founder and CEO of Sweetwater, said, “We are thrilled to partner with Providence to help accelerate our next phase of growth and bring the ‘Sweetwater Difference’ to even more customers. I am incredibly proud of the growth our company achieved over the last year, which would not have been possible without the dedication of our employees and world-class team of music gear experts. I am confident this growth equity investment will allow us to reach new heights and further our mission of enabling customers to make music and pursue their dreams.”
John Hopkins, COO of Sweetwater, added, “Providence is a great partner to continue our momentum and take Sweetwater to the next level. As the world emerges from the pandemic, we believe the firm’s strong track record of helping music-related businesses accelerate their growth will be invaluable. The Providence team appreciates what makes Sweetwater different and we are aligned on how we can further leverage our unique culture to capitalize on new opportunities that create even better customer experiences.”
Across the last two decades, Providence has invested in a range of digital and ecommerce platforms such as CDW, Autotrader, Hulu, Blackboard, HSE24, Tes Global and Groupe La Centrale. Providence’s current and previous music-related investments include Ambassador Theatre Group, TAIT, Tempo Music Investments, Superstruct Entertainment and Warner Music Group.
J.P. Morgan served as Sweetwater’s financial advisor, and King & Spalding LLP and Carson LLP served as legal advisors to Sweetwater. The Raine Group served as Providence’s financial advisor and Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP served as legal advisor to Providence.
Sweetwater • www.sweetwater.com
Providence Equity Partners • www.provequity.com