Stickley Audi & Co. moving in

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - The Boyles building has sat on the side of 77 near Harris Boulevard looking like a foreclosed home since the furniture maker went out of business.

But now a new company with a historic background is breathing life back into it.

"It's an old brand, an iconic name," says president and CEO Aminy Audi.

Stickley started making rich furniture like this at the turn of the 19th century. Seventy years later, when Mrs. Stickley needed to sell, she approached a family she trusted.

"She called my husband and asked him if he would buy it," Audi recalls. "She said Alfred you are the only one who loves Stickley enough to keep its quality, would you buy it, and we did."

A partnership was born, and now Stickley Audi's classic American roots and the Audi family's passion for quality have inspired them to take an important stand against a growing trend - outsourcing.

Today, many furniture companies make their products in other countries.

"Namely China, where labor is much less expensive," Audi says. "Whether one will be able to recover from that I'm not sure."

It's cost America many jobs, and it's made it difficult for companies who refuse to outsource to compete.

"There are several companies that made a strategic decision to continue production in this country, and Stickley is one of those companies," she says.

It's one reason why this furniture is expensive.

"We have survived many times," Audi says when asked about the company's future in tight economic times. "I view sometimes crisis as an opportunity."

And perhaps that opportunity is here...with unemployment as high as it is customers are hyper-aware of the issues.

"Either you buy things that are good, that are made in America, and support the economy or you're just going to end up paying taxes to support a different kind of economy," Nils Lucander told us as he shopped at Stickley's new store.