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Cambridge Closing Most Stores, Considering Custom Expansion

1/16/2007 02:22:00 PM Eastern

Andover, Mass. — Cambridge SoundWorks will reduce its store count to two, from 15, by the end of the year because the stores are too small to display video in lifestyle settings and to offer stepped-up custom installation services, said GM Robert Mainero.

The company, whose store count peaked at 30 in the late 1990s, closed eight stores in 2006.

Cambridge SoundWorks’ name will remain active, however, because the company will continue to sell direct to consumers through its catalog/online operation and continue to sell its Cambridge-branded home speakers and table radios through select retailers, he added.

Cambridge will revamp its flagship 6,000-square-foot store in Newton, Mass., to “test new concepts” and possibly use what it learns to open new stores that will be more custom installation and lifestyle-focused than the outlets slated for closure, Mainero said. The other surviving store, a 4,000-square-foot outlet in the Cambridge, Mass., was also more focused on custom installation and lifestyles displays than the stores being shuttered, he noted.