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A.C. Moore will close every store, reopen some as Michaels

A.C. Moore is the latest retailer to throw in the towel.

The family-owned craft store chain, with a location in the McKinley Plaza in Hamburg, will close all of its stores, the company announced. About 40 stores will reopen under the Michaels banner in 2020, but the company has not yet said which locations those will be.

A.C. Moore parent company Nicole Crafts said the retail environment has become so competitive that the company has decided to get out of the retail business.

"Given the headwinds facing many retailers in today's environment, it made it very difficult for us to operate and compete on a National level," the company said in a news release.

It has stopped accepting online orders, but will fulfill any orders that have already been placed, it said. A third-party group has been tapped to run liquidation sales at stores.

In addition to the 40 store leases, Michaels will assume the lease on an A.C. Moore distribution facility, as well as A.C. Moore's intellectual property.

In the coming weeks, the company will announce on its website which locations will reopen under the Michaels banner, it said. No closing dates have been announced.

A.C. Moore had a handful of stores in the Buffalo Niagara market, and closed all but the Hamburg store a few years ago. It now has about 145 stores, predominately on the East Coast, and has more than 5,000 employees. Its first store opened in New Jersey in 1985.

Michaels has stores at Walden Consumer Square in Cheektowaga, Eastgate Plaza in Clarence, and at Boulevard Mall in Amherst. The store at Boulevard Mall will soon relocate to a space behind Target in the Niagara Falls Boulevard shopping plaza known as The Boulevard.

Boston-headquartered Gordon Brothers will run the liquidation sales.

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