CHAMPAIGN — C.V. Lloyde, a fixture in downtown Champaign for 147 years, plans to move to Urbana and get out of the musical instrument retail business, the company’s president said.
The store, at 102 S. Neil St., C, plans to sell off its inventory of musical instruments over the next two months and move to the Lincoln Commerce Center at 702 Killarney St., U, President Stephen Morris said.
There, the business will concentrate on its audiovisual design and integration business, which has been rapidly growing, he said.
Morris said his partner in the business, C.V. Lloyde, will retire from the company June 30. He is the fourth generation of the Lloyde family to operate the business, established in 1867.
The musical instrument side of the business sells bass, acoustic and electric guitars, as well as keyboards, home studio recording equipment and sound reinforcement systems. The store exited from orchestral string, woodwind and brass instruments in the 1970s and from percussion instruments in the 1980s, Morris said.
Morris said the audiovisual business represents about 90 percent of C.V. Lloyde’s business. That side of business supplies video walls, large flat screens, projectors and control systems, sound reinforcement systems and wireless microphones, among other products.
The company’s client base includes churches and synagogues, hotels and convention centers, restaurants and bars, retail stores, public transportation centers and schools and universities.
Morris said the store’s three music instructors are finding new locations for giving lessons, some at other music stores in town.
The retail sales manager found a job with another music retailer in town, and other employees have been “repurposed” within the business, he said.
With the move, C.V. Lloyde will have six employees, including Morris. That includes a customer service manager, an office manager/bookkeeper, a lead technician and two other technicians.
The store’s customer service department will continue to repair electronics equipment, including that on the music side, and the rental department will continue to lease audiovisual equipment.
Morris said he does not know what will happen with the building at 102 S. Neil St., which the company leases. The company occupies the first and second floors, with the retail store and customer service department on the first floor and the audiovisual business on the second floor.
It has been in that building since the early 1960s. Before that, the business operated from two other locations in downtown Champaign, one on Main Street and one on North Neil Street, Morris said.
Morris said the company will move from 4,000 square feet to about 3,600 square feet on Killarney Street, with the new space providing more warehousing space for the business.