Steinway Opens Shanghai Distribution Center
Steinway & Sons opened its 63,000-square-foot Asia Pacific headquarters in Shanghai in March, the same month the piano maker was founded in New York City in 1853. Located at the Shanghai Pilot Free Trade Zone, the new distribution facility is Steinway’s third-largest global operating center after New York and Hamburg. China has become an increasingly important market for Steinway’s global development, and the new Shanghai location follows the opening in 2017 of Steinway Hall Beijing, a music hall and retail location serving music lovers and professional artists.
“We choose Shanghai as the Steinway Asia Pacific Regional Headquarters, and the first stop in Asia Pacific to celebrate Steinway’s 165th Anniversary, because China is always one of the most important markets for Steinway’s global presence,” said Steinway CEO Ron Losby at a grand opening celebration. “It fully demonstrates our confidence in the Chinese market and our focus on the development of Chinese music, art, and culture. We firmly believe that on this mysterious and attractive Oriental land, more and more Chinese music lovers, appreciators, and artists will share with Steinway the unparalleled artistic experience brought by music. Steinway will also bring the most important innovative products and the most wonderful artistic pieces to Chinese music lovers.”
Steinway & Sons adopted a global strategy shortly after its founding in 1853. The Shanghai facility continues that tradition. Losby commented, “If we look back in history, first it was Europe that represented the growth opportunity for piano sales. Next, it was America, the “New World,” and companies—including Steinway—rushed to open new facilities to serve this developing market. Now, today, it is China and the Asia-Pacific region which promise long-term growth for Steinway. This facility shows our commitment to this region and our belief that significant growth will continue well into the future.”
The new Shanghai building boasts an exterior design that follows the curve of a Steinway Model D concert grand. The architecture expresses the artistic craftsmanship of a Steinway piano while highlighting Steinway’s elegant classical style. In addition, the facility features showrooms, a selection area for artists, and service facilities.
In addition to Losby, other Steinway representatives at the grand opening were Benjamin Steiner, Steinway CFO and COO; Werner Husmann, honorary chairman of Steinway Asia Pacific; and Wei Wei, president, Steinway Asia Pacific. Also in attendance were Sean B. Stein, consul general of the United States in Shanghai, and Steinway Artist Lang Lang, who performed along with three extraordinary young Chinese pianists. The three children soloed first, highlighting the achievements of Chinese musical education; afterwards, Lang Lang performed with the three young pianists to demonstrate the generational continuity of Chinese music. The evening closed with Lang Lang’s performance of Chopin’s “Minute Waltz” on Steinway’s Spirio high-resolution player piano.
Following the Shanghai premiere, Steinway will stage a series of musical events throughout 40 major cities in Asia to celebrate its 165th anniversary.