Friday, 04 September 2015 13:09

Classic Stereo Returns to Grand Rapids

Written by  Rich Tupica
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Left to right: New Classic Stereo owner Scott Bekins and former owner John Higgs. Left to right: New Classic Stereo owner Scott Bekins and former owner John Higgs. COURTESY PHOTO

For 26 years Classic Stereo was a hi-fi fixture in West Michigan. Then, following the economic recession, the retail outlet closed in 2008 – but the story doesn’t end there.

The audio/visual electronics retailer, which previously had locations in both Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids, is now prepping for a comeback in Grand Rapids.

The Classic Stereo brand, set to re-open at the end of October, was revived by Bekins, the local appliance and electronics company. For those in search of a new high-end turntable, or just a decent set of headphones, the new Classic Stereo store is located next door to Bekins’ Grand Rapids showroom at 6275 28th Street SE.

While the brand is under new ownership of Bekins, the A/V retailer’s management said in a statement it will continue to offer “high end audio and video equipment” – a noble pursuit considering the ever growing popularity of low-quality MP3s and streaming services.

Bekins owner, Scott Bekins, said the idea of re-launching Classic Stereo was hatched back in 2012 after his Grand Haven-based Bekins brand hit a growth spurt – thanks to the addition of the Grand Rapids location. And he doesn’t seem worried about the demand for quality sounds.

“We’re already A/V experts, so relaunching Classic Stereo as an extension of Bekins makes a world of sense,” Bekins said. “The market demand for high end A/V is strong in West Michigan. We know, because our team is growing to keep up with it … We’re excited to leverage our team’s talent, experience and vendor relationships to bring Classic Stereo back to its former glory.”
Also, customers of the original stores will recognize some familiar faces: John Higgs and Bill Price, members of the former store’s management, have rejoined the Classic Stereo sales team.

“It’s exciting to see the brand come alive again,” Higgs said. “And I get to do what I love - working again with our favorite vendors and customers.”

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