Fittest loser
Article posted: 12/21/2012 5:37 PM

Office Max to leave West Dundee

Office Max in West Dundee, which has been open since 1993, is closing in March. An official said the company is closing that location to focus on newer stores nearby. Its 16 employees will be placed at other stores.

Office Max in West Dundee, which has been open since 1993, is closing in March. An official said the company is closing that location to focus on newer stores nearby. Its 16 employees will be placed at other stores.

 

Christopher Hankins | Staff Photographer

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Office Max, a West Dundee staple since the early 1990s, has announced plans to close by March, citing a desire to focus on newer stores it has in Elgin, Algonquin and Hoffman Estates.

"We have a number of stores in the area that are new stores and we feel are better suited to the meet the local needs of our customer base." said Julie Treon a company spokeswoman for Office Max.

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The store is located within the Gateway Center on Route 31, just north of Route 72.

Sixteen people work there and they will relocate to the company's other stores, Treon said. Office Max, based in Naperville, operates 872 stores in the United States.

As part of the transition, the store is holding a closeout sale.

Office Max has been at the Gateway Center since 1993 and its lease expires March 15, 2013. It is the second big box retailer to announce its departure this year.

Best Buy closed abruptly earlier in the year, forcing the village to enact a series of cuts to save more than $200,000.

With Office Max leaving, the village won't need to make any cuts, Village Manager Joe Cavallaro said.

The exact dollar amounts of Office Max's contributions to the village weren't available, but it doesn't approach the $400,000 that came from Best Buy every year, Cavallaro said.

West Dundee has known for several months that Office Max was looking to leave, but without cooperation from the landlord -- the Bank of Camden in Tennessee -- there wasn't much the village could do to keep Office Max around, Cavallaro said.

"From a village perspective, we made some direct efforts with Office Max to try to retain them, but without the direct cooperation of the property owner, it becomes an uphill battle," Cavallaro said. "If only two of the three parties are at the table, it's real difficult to put together a deal that makes good economic sense for everyone."

A representative from the Bank of Camden could not be reached for comment Friday.

"For us, this was a natural lease expiration," Treon said. "We have some newer stores nearby we feel are better served to meet the customers' needs."

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