- acoustic guitars
- bass guitars
- classical guitars
- electric guitars
- double bass
Bjärton was a Swedish stringed instrument manufacturer founded by Sigurd Nilsson and Göte Karlström in 1946. Nilsson and Göte Karlström had respectively worked together as a polisher and carpenter at a furniture factory before forming Bjärnums Musikinstrumentfabrik (Bjärnum's Musical Instrument Factory) in Bjärnum, Sweden to build double basses. They soon moved to a purpose built factory, changed the name to Bjärton Musikinstrumentfabrik (Bjärton Musical Instrument Factory) and hired their first employee in 1947.
Double basses were their main product until 1952 when they began building guitars as well. Such was the demand for guitars that by 1956 they discontinued the double basses (after making around 5000). The workforce grew to 20 employees at this stage.
Bjärton began making guitars for other brands. In 1960 Hagström ordered a line of guitars for their branch in Norway. In 1961 Bjärton began making Tarrega brand acoustic guitars for Fender and España brand acoustic guitars for Buegeleisen & Jacobson, Inc. Hagström acquired exclusive rights to export Bjärton brand instruments and by 1963 was also selling the standard Bjärton guitar models under the Hagström brand name through their international distribution network.
The 1960s boom in the popularity of acoustic guitar based folk and rock & roll music led to a further expansion of the workforce to 60 people, to meet the growing demand for acoustic guitars. But, by the late 1960s the orders had stopped coming, due to the availability of cheaper import instruments made elsewhere. In 1969 Bjärton suffered from a cash-flow problems and had to reduce the workforce. Sigurd Nilsson's brother Kurt became the new owner of the company.
In 1980 the Italian company GEM acquired Bjärton and in 1989 it was returned to Swedish ownership but unfortunately the factory closed in 1990 and the remaining 15 workers were made redundant.