In the pantheon of audiophile retailers including Christopher Hansen, Mike Kay, Mark Ormiston, Mark Goldman or even Mark Levinson - nobody looms larger in aura than Manhattan's Andy Singer with his Sound by Singer retail showroom. In today's market, New York is clearly the most viable place to sell audiophile products because of the love of music, high per-capita income and a robust install base of loyal audiophiles from "The City" as well as from around the world. With this said, the news that Sound by Singer was closing in mid-September comes as an eye opener to audio-video enthusiasts, despite the big-headline failures of Tweeter, The Good Guys and Circuit City as well as countless other more boutique, brick and mortar stores. Surely, Andy can't be done.
The truth is that Sound by Singer ran into a lease issue that they couldn't easily overcome. Per foot prices of New York City retail space in 2008, when Singer signed his last lease, were at an all-time high, having come off the housing boom of the mid-2000s. Despite good faith efforts on the part of the landlord (must not be a bank) and Singer - the two decided to part ways and break the lease on good terms this September. Singer will be looking for new digs in New York City that are priced to meet the modern needs of an audiophile store in the new economy. Between now and the time Mr. Singer can find new space, his staff will be liquidating some of their inventory, storing other inventory and selling some products directly over the phone and Internet. They will be back in brick and mortar retail by all reports.
Consider the news of Sound by Singer closing as more of a restructuring. Nobody is filing for bankruptcy. The business is simply being reinvented to be dedicated to the needs of the market going forward.
"I am going on 60 years old and I still have a passion for music and audio." said Andy Singer. "We are in a great cash position and will be prepared to be much stronger because of the move that we are going to make. Everyone who wants a truly first class audio experience will be invited to the new store and anyone looking for a true deal is welcomed to call or stop by as we liquidate the old store."