AGS was set up in the mid-1950s by Maganlal Jethalal Shah, who had co-owned CMS until he left after falling out with his business partner Meghji Karman Shah. Maganlal Jethalal Shah then set up African Gramophone Stores as both a music store and a recording and producing operation, in the same street as CMS, Nairobi’s River Road. The former partners became fierce rivals until CMS was sold to Joseph Kamaru in 1968 and Maganlal Jethalal Shah decided to wind up AGS in 1972 due to dwindling sales caused by cassette piracy.