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#1987821 - 11/17/12 01:35 PM Re: Steinway Hall in NY - Sold? [Re: Norbert]
Plowboy Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/26/08
Posts: 2308
Loc: SoCal
Originally Posted By: Norbert
... but 100% "made in Germany" still carries its weight around the world.


That's "made in Germany" by an American company.
_________________________
Gary

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#1987823 - 11/17/12 01:44 PM Re: Steinway Hall in NY - Sold? [Re: Plowboy]
nylawbiz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/01/09
Posts: 254
Loc: Columbia County, New York
If more of the world was exposed to NY Steinways, NY Steinways would have equal esteem with German pianos. I assure you, among the billions of Chinese, there will be plenty of devotees to NY Steinways who can gobble up the existing population of NY pianos, plus the next 100 years worth of future production, at Steinway's current production levels. How long will this take, I haven't a clue.

Here are two hypothetical questions: If Steinway was able to move their production to China, and train workers there the methods and systems used in Astoria and Hamburg, how many pianos would they sell a year? Again, just for fun, imagine Steinway transplanting the Astoria factory, lock, stock and barrel with staff to China. How long would it take to train 20,000 Chinese craftsman to make the pianos exactly like they make them in New York or Germany?

Thank you Lang Lang!

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#1987852 - 11/17/12 02:51 PM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: nylawbiz]
pianoloverus Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19347
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: nylawbiz
End of an era. Is this the beginning of the dismantling of Steinway & Sons as we know it? I have a hard time imagining that an Asian owner really cares or even understands what the S&S building, no less S&S itself means to Americans, New Yorkers and American pianists. In addition to the iconic brand, S&S also represents our glimmer of hope that America can still manufacturer a world class product, even in New York City.

If in fact Astoria is only putting out 1,500 pianos a year, things are very dire indeed for this great institution. How long can the factory exist? Having taken the tour of the factory earlier this year and seeing the size and complication of the plant is amazing. And probably amazingly expensive to maintain, especially in Queens. I'm afraid the writing is on the wall that future viewers of "Note By Note" will view it as a quaint historical memoir, instead of a documentary on a contemporary subject.

At least we will have all the Steinway pianos out there as testament of what was, even into the 21st century. That's if any pianos remain here in the United States, as opposed to most of them eventually being gobbled up and sent overseas to China and the Pacific Rim. China is already Steinway's biggest customer. With the Chinese population growing and becoming more prosperous, the demand for Steinways in the East will continue, even with the demise of S&S as we know it. So, it may come a day when a Steinway piano in North America may become as rare as hens' teeth.

This will be a boom to the rebuilders, but probably a big blow to the popularity of piano playing, so in the end, no one winds (except maybe Samick).

So sad and there is nothing we can do to stop the eventuality.
Completely idle speculation which seems to be totally or at least largely false based on on Bob Snyder's post.

Those familiar with Steinway's history know there have been many ups and downs with some of those difficult periods probably far worse than the present one. I don't understand why some seem so eager to be the bearers of doom.


Edited by pianoloverus (11/17/12 02:56 PM)

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#1987880 - 11/17/12 04:22 PM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: Bob Snyder]
Steve Cohen Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10479
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: Bob Snyder
Hello everyone -
There is not too much I can add at this point - other than to say that the announcement as reported by MMR is correct. Please remember that the building was sold once before - but we remained as tenants - and ultimately repurchased the building. The sky didn't fall, and the world did not come to an end. Nor will it this time, should this sale close.

We are certainly committed to the New York market, and will continue to have a major presence there.

As a 31 year Steinway & Sons employee, I can appreciate both sides of this. Steinway Hall is a facility that has been much more than a retail store, that's for sure. Yet if we step back and look at this objectively, it is not unreasonable for a company to look at all the factors involved in such a decision - then make the decision that they believe to ultimately be in the company's best interest. In fact, it would be irresponsible NOT to do so.

Lastly, and in response to the comments above that suggest this decision is indicative that Steinway is on the way out: nothing could be further from the truth. We've been around a long time - and have weathered many storms (including the very recent and literal storm). As far as whether this is the beginning of "the dismantling of Steinway & Sons": absolutely not! Our factory remains very busy, and our company continues to be profitable. the number of retail stores we now own is much higher than was the case 10 years ago. This has to do with one specific (an incredibly well known) retail location. It by no means suggests anything beyond that as to the overall future of Steinway & Sons - other than that our commitment to remain and thrive has not changed. Consider New York just for one last minute: 20 years ago, we had one major location. Today, we have four.

Our commitment to the New York retail market has grown; it has not diminished, nor will it.

I appreciate the fact that so many care about this. Thank you.


I have spoken to a number of industry pros and what Bob says ring true. Steinway insn't going anywhere.

My guess is the the realestate value of Steinway Hall exceeded the advantages Steinway could realize staying in that location.
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1988105 - 11/18/12 10:36 AM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: pianoloverus]
nylawbiz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/01/09
Posts: 254
Loc: Columbia County, New York
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: nylawbiz
End of an era. Is this the beginning of the dismantling of Steinway & Sons as we know it? I have a hard time imagining that an Asian owner really cares or even understands what the S&S building, no less S&S itself means to Americans, New Yorkers and American pianists. In addition to the iconic brand, S&S also represents our glimmer of hope that America can still manufacturer a world class product, even in New York City.

If in fact Astoria is only putting out 1,500 pianos a year, things are very dire indeed for this great institution. How long can the factory exist? Having taken the tour of the factory earlier this year and seeing the size and complication of the plant is amazing. And probably amazingly expensive to maintain, especially in Queens. I'm afraid the writing is on the wall that future viewers of "Note By Note" will view it as a quaint historical memoir, instead of a documentary on a contemporary subject.

At least we will have all the Steinway pianos out there as testament of what was, even into the 21st century. That's if any pianos remain here in the United States, as opposed to most of them eventually being gobbled up and sent overseas to China and the Pacific Rim. China is already Steinway's biggest customer. With the Chinese population growing and becoming more prosperous, the demand for Steinways in the East will continue, even with the demise of S&S as we know it. So, it may come a day when a Steinway piano in North America may become as rare as hens' teeth.

This will be a boom to the rebuilders, but probably a big blow to the popularity of piano playing, so in the end, no one winds (except maybe Samick).

So sad and there is nothing we can do to stop the eventuality.
Completely idle speculation which seems to be totally or at least largely false based on on Bob Snyder's post.

Those familiar with Steinway's history know there have been many ups and downs with some of those difficult periods probably far worse than the present one. I don't understand why some seem so eager to be the bearers of doom.


As the man says, "past performance is no indication of future results." The past machinations of S&S was when it was either a family owned company, or an American owned company. Times are different. S&S is controlled by a corporation with a different ethos than traditional values of American companies. Not to put Samick down (I really know little about them) but the days when S&S ran the business like a family are over. I cannot imagine that the current owners have any real commitment to New York, the United States, or American workers for that matter. Like most large businesses these days there are purely profit driven, focusing on short term profit goals, not long term goals. why would Samick keep Astoria going, if the majority of their customers are 8,000-10,000 miles away with strict import duties? Just makes total business sense to move production to China. At least at some point in the future. This is not what I hope for, but obviously you and I have no say in this, it is just seems the logical expectation from a country that is based in the Far East.

Does anyone dispute that the vast majority of pianos sales over the next 50 years will be in China and the Far East?

Can the Western Hemisphere support the Astoria factory? Can Astoria be profitable? Seems like a behemoth from an earlier era.

I believe that unless S&S is able to manufacture goods in Astoria that can be sold to a greater portion of the American buying public, it has to be on borrowed time, at best. I suggest that S&S use the Astoria factory to manufacture goods which is accessible to more American consumers. Maybe accessories for pianos (benches, music cabinets, lighting) or even market piano related paraphernalia such as artwork, collectibles, and memorabilia. I mean, they can even make artwork out of mounted action parts. Jewelry out of piano components. Things that a Steinway aficionado would purchase.

I presume that a large majority of US S&S sales are to institutions, not individuals. Steinway needs to offer American made products for the general consumer. $60,000-$130,000 sales are great, but in between those sales, there is nothing wrong with selling some lower ticket items (as they do with parts sales). Anything that does not diminish the prestige of the brand, while at the same time utilizing more of the factory and workers in Astoria.

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#1988106 - 11/18/12 10:38 AM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: Steve Cohen]
nylawbiz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/01/09
Posts: 254
Loc: Columbia County, New York
[/quote] My guess is the the real estate value of Steinway Hall exceeded the advantages Steinway could realize staying in that location. [/quote]

Couldn't the same be said of the Astoria factory?

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#1988124 - 11/18/12 11:20 AM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: nylawbiz]
Grotriman Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/07/04
Posts: 724
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: nylawbiz
[/quote] My guess is the the real estate value of Steinway Hall exceeded the advantages Steinway could realize staying in that location.


Couldn't the same be said of the Astoria factory? [/quote]

No.

Midtown real estate is far more expensive than Astoria Queens. By my calculations, they would need to sell 1/3 of their entire annual production out of the NYC Midtown location in order to break even. Not likely given the number of retail locations in the rest of the United States.

Whereas the location is nice and the entire process of getting registered to go in etc is "exclusive". I imagine they get nowhere near the traffic they would if they had a smaller store on 58th street like the other piano stores in NYC. They need to change their marketing from "are you qualified to spend what we are demanding?" to "we make the very best so you should your spend your piano dollars here".
_________________________
Regards,

Grotriman

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#1988130 - 11/18/12 11:41 AM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: nylawbiz]
pianoloverus Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19347
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: nylawbiz
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: nylawbiz
End of an era. Is this the beginning of the dismantling of Steinway & Sons as we know it? I have a hard time imagining that an Asian owner really cares or even understands what the S&S building, no less S&S itself means to Americans, New Yorkers and American pianists. In addition to the iconic brand, S&S also represents our glimmer of hope that America can still manufacturer a world class product, even in New York City.

If in fact Astoria is only putting out 1,500 pianos a year, things are very dire indeed for this great institution. How long can the factory exist? Having taken the tour of the factory earlier this year and seeing the size and complication of the plant is amazing. And probably amazingly expensive to maintain, especially in Queens. I'm afraid the writing is on the wall that future viewers of "Note By Note" will view it as a quaint historical memoir, instead of a documentary on a contemporary subject.

At least we will have all the Steinway pianos out there as testament of what was, even into the 21st century. That's if any pianos remain here in the United States, as opposed to most of them eventually being gobbled up and sent overseas to China and the Pacific Rim. China is already Steinway's biggest customer. With the Chinese population growing and becoming more prosperous, the demand for Steinways in the East will continue, even with the demise of S&S as we know it. So, it may come a day when a Steinway piano in North America may become as rare as hens' teeth.

This will be a boom to the rebuilders, but probably a big blow to the popularity of piano playing, so in the end, no one winds (except maybe Samick).

So sad and there is nothing we can do to stop the eventuality.
Completely idle speculation which seems to be totally or at least largely false based on on Bob Snyder's post.

Those familiar with Steinway's history know there have been many ups and downs with some of those difficult periods probably far worse than the present one. I don't understand why some seem so eager to be the bearers of doom.


As the man says, "past performance is no indication of future results." The past machinations of S&S was when it was either a family owned company, or an American owned company. Times are different. S&S is controlled by a corporation with a different ethos than traditional values of American companies. Not to put Samick down (I really know little about them) but the days when S&S ran the business like a family are over. I cannot imagine that the current owners have any real commitment to New York, the United States, or American workers for that matter. Like most large businesses these days there are purely profit driven, focusing on short term profit goals, not long term goals. why would Samick keep Astoria going, if the majority of their customers are 8,000-10,000 miles away with strict import duties? Just makes total business sense to move production to China. At least at some point in the future. This is not what I hope for, but obviously you and I have no say in this, it is just seems the logical expectation from a country that is based in the Far East.

Does anyone dispute that the vast majority of pianos sales over the next 50 years will be in China and the Far East?

Can the Western Hemisphere support the Astoria factory? Can Astoria be profitable? Seems like a behemoth from an earlier era.

I believe that unless S&S is able to manufacture goods in Astoria that can be sold to a greater portion of the American buying public, it has to be on borrowed time, at best. I suggest that S&S use the Astoria factory to manufacture goods which is accessible to more American consumers. Maybe accessories for pianos (benches, music cabinets, lighting) or even market piano related paraphernalia such as artwork, collectibles, and memorabilia. I mean, they can even make artwork out of mounted action parts. Jewelry out of piano components. Things that a Steinway aficionado would purchase.

I presume that a large majority of US S&S sales are to institutions, not individuals. Steinway needs to offer American made products for the general consumer. $60,000-$130,000 sales are great, but in between those sales, there is nothing wrong with selling some lower ticket items (as they do with parts sales). Anything that does not diminish the prestige of the brand, while at the same time utilizing more of the factory and workers in Astoria.
I see the fact that your first lengthy post was shown to be mostly/entirely incorrect hasn't discouraged you from further idle speculation.

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#1988138 - 11/18/12 12:09 PM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: Plowboy]
Piano World Offline



Registered: 05/24/01
Posts: 5587
Loc: Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
Enough with the guesses and speculation folks.

I don't think it would matter if Steinway was family owned, U.S. company owned, non- U.S. owned, a combination, or whatever. Whoever owns the company would want to do what they had to in order to survive and succeed.
In the end the important thing to me is that we don't lose any more venerable old piano manufacturers (and we hopefully keep jobs here in the U.S.).
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#1988159 - 11/18/12 12:58 PM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: pianoloverus]
sophial Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/05
Posts: 3465
Loc: US
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: nylawbiz
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: nylawbiz
End of an era. Is this the beginning of the dismantling of Steinway & Sons as we know it? I have a hard time imagining that an Asian owner really cares or even understands what the S&S building, no less S&S itself means to Americans, New Yorkers and American pianists. In addition to the iconic brand, S&S also represents our glimmer of hope that America can still manufacturer a world class product, even in New York City.

If in fact Astoria is only putting out 1,500 pianos a year, things are very dire indeed for this great institution. How long can the factory exist? Having taken the tour of the factory earlier this year and seeing the size and complication of the plant is amazing. And probably amazingly expensive to maintain, especially in Queens. I'm afraid the writing is on the wall that future viewers of "Note By Note" will view it as a quaint historical memoir, instead of a documentary on a contemporary subject.

At least we will have all the Steinway pianos out there as testament of what was, even into the 21st century. That's if any pianos remain here in the United States, as opposed to most of them eventually being gobbled up and sent overseas to China and the Pacific Rim. China is already Steinway's biggest customer. With the Chinese population growing and becoming more prosperous, the demand for Steinways in the East will continue, even with the demise of S&S as we know it. So, it may come a day when a Steinway piano in North America may become as rare as hens' teeth.

This will be a boom to the rebuilders, but probably a big blow to the popularity of piano playing, so in the end, no one winds (except maybe Samick).

So sad and there is nothing we can do to stop the eventuality.
Completely idle speculation which seems to be totally or at least largely false based on on Bob Snyder's post.

Those familiar with Steinway's history know there have been many ups and downs with some of those difficult periods probably far worse than the present one. I don't understand why some seem so eager to be the bearers of doom.


As the man says, "past performance is no indication of future results." The past machinations of S&S was when it was either a family owned company, or an American owned company. Times are different. S&S is controlled by a corporation with a different ethos than traditional values of American companies. Not to put Samick down (I really know little about them) but the days when S&S ran the business like a family are over. I cannot imagine that the current owners have any real commitment to New York, the United States, or American workers for that matter. Like most large businesses these days there are purely profit driven, focusing on short term profit goals, not long term goals. why would Samick keep Astoria going, if the majority of their customers are 8,000-10,000 miles away with strict import duties? Just makes total business sense to move production to China. At least at some point in the future. This is not what I hope for, but obviously you and I have no say in this, it is just seems the logical expectation from a country that is based in the Far East.

Does anyone dispute that the vast majority of pianos sales over the next 50 years will be in China and the Far East?

Can the Western Hemisphere support the Astoria factory? Can Astoria be profitable? Seems like a behemoth from an earlier era.

I believe that unless S&S is able to manufacture goods in Astoria that can be sold to a greater portion of the American buying public, it has to be on borrowed time, at best. I suggest that S&S use the Astoria factory to manufacture goods which is accessible to more American consumers. Maybe accessories for pianos (benches, music cabinets, lighting) or even market piano related paraphernalia such as artwork, collectibles, and memorabilia. I mean, they can even make artwork out of mounted action parts. Jewelry out of piano components. Things that a Steinway aficionado would purchase.

I presume that a large majority of US S&S sales are to institutions, not individuals. Steinway needs to offer American made products for the general consumer. $60,000-$130,000 sales are great, but in between those sales, there is nothing wrong with selling some lower ticket items (as they do with parts sales). Anything that does not diminish the prestige of the brand, while at the same time utilizing more of the factory and workers in Astoria.
I see the fact that your first lengthy post was shown to be mostly/entirely incorrect hasn't discouraged you from further idle speculation.



Right, let's slow down here . We don't even know if Steinway is leaving the hall yet, let alone any other changes. wow, talk about getting ahead of the facts....

and to my knowledge, Samick does not have controlling ownership of Steinway.
Plus even if that were to happen S&S might be just fine. It does seem that Bosendorfer is somehow surviving under Yamaha's ownership and maintaining its identity and quality. The sky is not falling at this point.

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#1988186 - 11/18/12 02:15 PM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: sophial]
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/07
Posts: 7192
Loc: torrance, CA
Originally Posted By: sophial

and to my knowledge, Samick does not have controlling ownership of Steinway.


That's my recollection as well. At the time of the purchase, it was a minority interest, and more significantly, the shares issued were non-voting shares. Kirkland and Messina had a strenglehold on voting shares at the time.

The flap here seems to be about whether Steinway needs to be in a gilded palace in mid-Manhattan in order to sell its pianos into its local market. I doubt it, and don't understand that feeling, but maybe Woody Allen could explain it.
_________________________
Will Johnny Come Marching Home?
The fate of the modern wartime soldier

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#1988257 - 11/18/12 06:02 PM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: nylawbiz]
Plowboy Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/26/08
Posts: 2308
Loc: SoCal
Originally Posted By: nylawbiz
Can Astoria be profitable?


Their latest balance sheet shows gross profit of $29 million. That includes New York, Hamburg and the band division.

Kirkland and Messina gave up those voting shares, Turandot.
_________________________
Gary

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#1988286 - 11/18/12 08:19 PM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: Plowboy]
Bob Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/01/01
Posts: 3866
A company has to change when the market changes, or the market will eat them up. Steinway management is smart enough to change with the market. I see this as a financial positive for the company, that outweighs the proximity to Carnegie Hall. I'm confident Steinway has a solid plan going forward.

And.......... it doesn't take 20,000 employees to make a Steinway piano.
_________________________
www.PianoTunerOrlando.com






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#1988343 - 11/19/12 12:12 AM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: Plowboy]
newgeneration Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/04/09
Posts: 428
Loc: Richmond Hill, Ontario
I'm all for jobs staying in North America but I do question the earlier thought that NY Steinways are equal to the other premium pianos primarily from Europe.

It is not uncommon to hear stories in the industry that for example, of 10 new Steinway pianos manufactured, 6 or 7 really shine with the character that their brand is known for. The other 3 or 4 don't provide quite the same impression. I've heard this more than once and it often makes me wonder - how has the company survived this long when 20-30% of its production is noticeably less stellar than what the other 70-80% is recognized for? If 20-30% of all the Mercedes that were manufactured did not perform to the expectations of the buying consumers, that would be considered a massive issue for the auto maker.

Even so, I echo the voices of reason that point out that the Steinway Hall sale shouldn't in any way suggest a beginning of the dismantling of S&S in America. Business decisions are likely being made with consideration of what will benefit the company to help keep it strong moving forward.
_________________________
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#1988433 - 11/19/12 08:51 AM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: Plowboy]
nylawbiz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/01/09
Posts: 254
Loc: Columbia County, New York
I hope my prognostications are not true, but only time will tell. I suggest that unless you tour the factory and see what actually is going on there, it is impossible to gauge the under utilization of a very large manufacturing plant. I think at one time the factory had many, many more workers then they do now.

Here are some facts:

1 Steinway Place, Astoria is actually owned by the New York City Industrial Development Agency. S&S has the property in a PILOT Program (Payment in Lieu of Taxes), a form of industrial incentive for NYC manufactures. The assessed value of the property is $25,500,000.00. To mitigate the real estate taxes on the property, the deed to the property has been transferred to the NYCIDA, which is tax exempt. Without the PILOT program, the annual real estate tax bill of the plant would be $2.5 million. Under the PILOT program, it is reduced to $250.000.00. Under the normal terms of a PILOT, at the end of the PILOT, the deed to the property reverts back to the original owner.

Under the terms of the PILOT that S&S has agreed to, there were supposed to retain 616 jobs, and create 89 new jobs. As per the 2012 annual report, they only show 383 jobs, a net loss of 233 jobs. The PILOT went into effect 1999, and is scheduled to expire in 2026. However, if they do not maintain the jobs they agreed to, they could lose the PILOT deal, which would result in their real estate taxes going up ten fold.

To see this information, go to:

http://www.nycedc.com/sites/default/files/filemanager/Compliance/IDA/FY2012_Annual_Report_IDA.pdf

and navigate to page 451.

If S&S continues to reduce their payroll, they face the good chance that they would lose their PILOT. If that happens, I bet dollars to donuts that they are out of there!

Does anyone know actually how many people are currently employed at S&S in NYC?

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#1992158 - 11/28/12 09:24 PM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: Plowboy]
Jonathan Baker Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/09/09
Posts: 340
Loc: New York City!
Just a few dozen yards from Steinway Hall is 57 West 57th Street, a building not yet complete but already notorious: catering to billionaires, this building is already sold out, and promises to be not only the tallest apartment building in NYC, but the most expensive apartment building in the world, with individual apartments reportedly selling for up to $90 million.

In such a neighborhood, Steinway property is hot merchandise in the real estate market. Very hot. Whether the building remains standing as is or is replaced by another condominium expressly for the ruling class remains to be seen. Living in walking distance from Steinway at 57th Street, I will miss it on a sentimental level - it was, after all, the meeting place for every pianist of distinction for many decades, from Paderewski to Rachmaninoff to Horowitz to whomever your favorite today may be. The place has karma big time.
_________________________
Jonathan Baker
http://www.BakerPianoLessons.com/index.htm

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#1992161 - 11/28/12 09:31 PM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: Plowboy]
Piano World Offline



Registered: 05/24/01
Posts: 5587
Loc: Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
Interesting Jonathan, thanks for posting.

I remember when McGraw-Hill sold one of their major buildings (the one on Sixth Ave. I believe) because they
couldn't pass the opportunity to make big money on the sale. Then they took long term favorable leases on the space they still needed.

I agree, you can feel the presence of great pianist in the 57th Street building.
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#1992166 - 11/28/12 09:42 PM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: nylawbiz]
pianoloverus Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19347
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: nylawbiz
I hope my prognostications are not true, but only time will tell. I suggest that unless you tour the factory and see what actually is going on there, it is impossible to gauge the under utilization of a very large manufacturing plant. I think at one time the factory had many, many more workers then they do now.

Here are some facts:

1 Steinway Place, Astoria is actually owned by the New York City Industrial Development Agency. S&S has the property in a PILOT Program (Payment in Lieu of Taxes), a form of industrial incentive for NYC manufactures. The assessed value of the property is $25,500,000.00. To mitigate the real estate taxes on the property, the deed to the property has been transferred to the NYCIDA, which is tax exempt. Without the PILOT program, the annual real estate tax bill of the plant would be $2.5 million. Under the PILOT program, it is reduced to $250.000.00. Under the normal terms of a PILOT, at the end of the PILOT, the deed to the property reverts back to the original owner.

Under the terms of the PILOT that S&S has agreed to, there were supposed to retain 616 jobs, and create 89 new jobs. As per the 2012 annual report, they only show 383 jobs, a net loss of 233 jobs. The PILOT went into effect 1999, and is scheduled to expire in 2026. However, if they do not maintain the jobs they agreed to, they could lose the PILOT deal, which would result in their real estate taxes going up ten fold.

To see this information, go to:

http://www.nycedc.com/sites/default/files/filemanager/Compliance/IDA/FY2012_Annual_Report_IDA.pdf

and navigate to page 451.

If S&S continues to reduce their payroll, they face the good chance that they would lose their PILOT. If that happens, I bet dollars to donuts that they are out of there!

Does anyone know actually how many people are currently employed at S&S in NYC?
Despite your disclaimer, you seem very happy to make dire predictions about Steinway. As if you couldn't care less and are more interested in showing your ability to gauge the economic future of the company.


Edited by pianoloverus (11/28/12 09:43 PM)

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#1992264 - 11/29/12 05:19 AM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: Plowboy]
nylawbiz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/01/09
Posts: 254
Loc: Columbia County, New York
Pinaoloverus, I don't think I have a monopoly of making predictions on here. I didn't know I needed your permission to express an opinion on here - my bad. Is it because you consider my prediction "dire" that makes it impermissible? Is it merely because you decided you don't like my opinion that makes it taboo? Please let me know how you acquired the special right to express an opinion, so someday I can aspire to be like you, and permitted to opine on here and deride those who I disagree with.

I know many who are as devoted to S&S as I am, but I know no one more devoted. I am not happy at all about my prediction, and I hope I am wrong. My hopes and feelings doesn't change facts. Public opinion can change corporate action, and providing FACTS on here can only help shape people's opinions if such people are designed intelligently enough to consider all the facts.

I do not have any special ability to "gauge the future of the company," just some basic internet research that anyone can do.

Pianoloverus, to paraphrase another esteemed member on here, it is as if you couldn't care less and are more interested in showing your ability to make snide remarks instead of making meaningful contributions to a discussion.

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#1992318 - 11/29/12 08:59 AM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: nylawbiz]
pianoloverus Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19347
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: nylawbiz
Pinaoloverus, I don't think I have a monopoly of making predictions on here. I didn't know I needed your permission to express an opinion on here - my bad.
You don't need my permission. I was just commenting on what seems like, based on the content and tone of several of the posts you made on this thread, your lack of concern about Steinway and greater concern about your predictive abilities about their future. That's the strong impression your posts gave to me.


Edited by pianoloverus (11/29/12 09:01 AM)

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#1992331 - 11/29/12 09:27 AM Re: Steinway Hall [Re: Plowboy]
Piano World Offline



Registered: 05/24/01
Posts: 5587
Loc: Parsonsfield, ME (orig. Nahant...
And another thread dissolves into petty bickering.

Grow up folks.

Thread Closed.
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