After 20 years, Michael’s Audio remembers past, looks toward future
April 9, 2015
The last 20 years have seen profound changes in the world of technology.
The mass marketing of internet technologies, the development of smartphones and the switch from analog to an all digital world have marked an era of transformation in technological development not experienced since the Industrial Revolution.
Michael Schurer, owner of Michael's Audio & Video Inc. in Fraser, has worked hard during the past 20 years to keep pace with the changes going on around him.
Michael's Audio & Video, located at 523 Zerez St., is celebrating 20 years in business this year. The company sells and installs TVs, stereos and other home entertainment electronics. A large portion of their business is basic service work, fishing new electronic wires in existing homes or repairing devices after they breakdown. They are a Direct TV and Dish dealer and are a Comcast vendor as well.
Michael's Audio & Video regularly installs home automation systems, incorporating TVs, security systems and cameras, and other electronic devices in a home into a single digital system controlled via smartphone. The technicians at Michael's Audio & Video can hook up home automation systems for new construction and can retrofit older existing structures.
"Because we are in an area with so many second-home owners we find a lot of people want the security," said Michael. "They want to look at what's going on."
During his 20 years in business in Grand County, Michael has seen big changes in the audio/video technology industry. He discussed the transformation from older style tube TVs to the modern flat screens and the general switch from analog to digital technologies. The ever-increasing levels of home automation have also caught Michael's attention.
"In the past people would have a few things hooked up but now we are connecting whole houses to the internet," he said. "People can unlock and lock their doors and activate and deactivate security systems remotely because it is digital."
Michael's Audio & Video has been located in Fraser since its inception. Their current location, in the Fraser shopping plaza, formerly known as the Alco plaza, functions as a showroom with multiple TV displays and various models for purchase. Michael highlighted the 4K televisions the business recently stocked. Michael referred to the 4K TVs as the next big movement in high definition televisions, with a resolution more than four times greater than a 1080p HDTV.
Originally from the Chicago area, Michael moved to Grand County in the '90s and started working on a business called Photo Maniacs. While he was living in Chicago, Michael worked for an audio/video installation company and gained experience wiring homes for entertainment systems. After moving to Fraser he was contacted by local contractors and homebuilders to wire home stereos and TVs on construction projects.
Eventually Michael started his own business, using a spare house on property he owned as his first showroom/office. Michael installed a large TV and stereo system in the house and used it for demonstration purposes. During that time period he also began developing relationships with distributors in the Denver area, which allows the business to match product prices from the Denver area.
The Great Recession had a significant impact on the business. Before the recession hit the company at one time employed five different installers. But despite such contractions Michael's Audio & Video is still going strong. He credits the success of his business, and the weathering of recent economic lulls, to customer loyalty.
"The loyalty of past customers has really taken care of me through this recession," he said. "I feel really lucky that I'm blessed to be in such an amazing place where people work to support small town business."
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