A tranche of eight new appointments worldwide has been announced by Warwick Music Group (WMG) – the UK-based music innovation-led company that has created the award-winning family of plastic musical instruments.
The appointments – in both the UK and its key international markets – are to enable the company, which worldwide now sells 100,000 instruments every year, to build on its sales growth and introduce new products to North America, Europe, Asia and Australia. They follow Warwick Music Group’s “most successful year yet” at NAMM, California – the world’s largest trade-only event for music products.
In the UK, Jonty Hines has been appointed Key Account Manager with emphasis on music dealers and distributors. Jonty was previously ten years as Account Manager at Norman Musical Instruments as a specialist supporting schools in both the state and private sectors. As a student, Jonty studied tuba and piano at the music centre his children now attend. As a musician, he has travelled the UK with his wife and brother-in-law, playing the piano and singing as part of a touring covers band performing classic hits. His most recent musical adventure is joining the local brass band.
Darren Lea has been appointed as Development Manager to strengthen and establish links between WMG and arts and education organisations that develop learning opportunities for youngsters of all ages. He began brass and percussion lessons at school at the age of seven and is from a brass banding family – his father conducted the then Rolls Royce band (now Jaguar Land Rover). Darren formerly worked at the charity Brass Bands England which enabled him to connect with and assist bands all over the country.
Katie Ruigrok has also been appointed as Bookkeeper and Administrator at the company’s Tamworth office. She was previously senior manager with Birmingham Metropolitan College with special emphasis on education.
Andy Ward also joins the WMG team as Logistics Operative. Andy coordinates much of the shipping activity, sending instruments all over the world from WMG’s Leicestershire warehouse. A musician himself with a varied background, Andy also runs a photography business.
Dan Ashton has also been appointed Digital Product Developer responsible for online output and e-commerce. Previously Dan was a front-end web developer for Aspidistra Software in addition to running his own web development business.
In North America, Rich Breske joins as Director of US Marketing. Based in Indiana, Rich has a long career in the music trade industry and is responsible for marketing all WMG’s instrument range with special emphasis on pBuzz, the unique pre-brass instrument developed by WMG that is designed for early learners and is an alternative to the more traditional recorder.
In Australia, Julie Fews has been appointed Education Consultant. Based in Sydney, Julie’s career in education includes teaching, directing a primary school band – and as a performer. Her appointment coincides with pBuzz being introduced to Stage 1 students in Australian schools.
In China, Chris Shea has been appointed Asia Pacific Sales Director. Chris relocated to the region in 2012 and in his new role is responsible for developing WMG’s sales channels and supporting our expanding network of music distributors and marketplaces.
Steven Greenall, Warwick Music Group CEO, said the appointments reflected the success of pBone, pTrumpet, pCornet and, pBuzz – and were designed to help structure the business to meet increasing worldwide and UK sales.
“We have grown rapidly since we introduced pBone, the world’s first plastic trombone, in 2012 and now have a range of complementary instruments with pBuzz enabling children as young as three to be introduced to brass – and our latest hybrid offering, pTrumpet hyTech, enables musicians to progress and play at an advanced level.
“The music industry is a relationship driven business as well as being a tremendous force for good in the world. We are most fortunate to have an outstanding team who have first-hand experience of our customers and why music matters to them,” said Steven.