After decades as a pioneer and force to be reckoned with in what’s now referred to as the “music software” biz, Kief’s Music is bowing out.
“I’m getting out of the CD business,” says owner John Kiefer. “I’ve kept the place open for the last two years losing money, but I can’t keep doing this.”
Frankly, who would?
Next up: “We are closing out our CDs and record albums,” Kiefer says. “We’re lowering all the prices and we have a large selection of 99 cents and up CDs and 51 cents and up LPs. We have thousands of both and they’re all used. We started changing the prices last week.”
Mr. K’s game plan:
“We’re not going to actually close it,” Kiefer says. “We’re going to sell down the inventory so we can make the space available for rental. And we’re going to expand the design and installation portion of our business. We’re not closing out the hardware part of the business – speakers, televisions and audio equipment – just the software part.”
Depending on how things shake out, if the right offer came along, Kiefer would consider selling the entire shopping center – located on prime real estate – for redevelopment.
“In fact, I’ve got it all drawn up and ready to go,” he says. “We don’t own a dime on it, so I could sell it tomorrow on the contingency that Kiefs Audio Video had six months to close out and do a giant liquidation sale. But if that doesn’t happen – nobody wants to buy it – I’ll be looking for tenants to rent the center and I’d shrink (Kiefs).”
“Steve will be here until the end of the month,” Kiefer says. “Steve was my very first employee and that’s important to me. Mark is gone as of now. I’m not going to set a closing date but if the CDs and albums start selling, well, I may be around for six months. Most guys closing out have a sense of urgency, but I have the luxury of taking my time.”