Real Estate, Retail, and Technology

The return of a Classic

September 10, 2015
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Classic Stereo
New Classic Stereo owner Scott Bekins and electronics expert John Higgs shake hands. Courtesy Classic Stereo

A name synonymous with high-end audio in the ’80s, ’90s and ’00s is returning to Grand Rapids.

What was once known as Classic Stereo and Video, a Grand Rapids audio/visual electronics retailer, will now simply be Classic Stereo after joining forces with Scott Bekins, the owner of Grand Haven-based appliance and electronics retail chain Bekins.

“We’re already A/V experts, so re-launching Classic Stereo as an extension of Bekins makes a world of sense,” said Bekins. “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.”

The reinvented Classic Stereo will be located next to Bekins’ Grand Rapids showroom at 6275 28th St. SE. A grand opening is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 24, according to its website.

The new store will focus exclusively on electronics, audio, video and integration, offering integration and installation, as well as be a resource for fans of hi-fidelity and hi-resolution audio. It will also feature a Sound Desk to help customers build music libraries. The store will feature equipment from manufacturers including Mark Levinson, Classe, Thorens, Marantz, Bowers and Wilkins, McIntosh, Peachtree and others.

John Higgs, who had been president at Classic Stereo and Video, and Bill Price, former store manager at the Kalamazoo location, have signed on as members of the new Classic Stereo’s 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.”

For 26 years, Classic Stereo and Video was a popular A/V retailer that serviced West Michigan. Business began to fade during the Great Recession, however, causing it to close stores in Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo in 2008.

Bekins began growing rapidly in 2012 after it added a Grand Rapids location. This summer, Bekins opened a 36,000-square-foot center in Coopersville at 590 O'Malley Drivebetween its Grand Rapids showroomand its Grand Haven showroom at 735 Washington Ave.

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