Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Little girl with a book

Here's a little girl I made. She is sitting with her cat, holding a McGuffey Reader. I scanned the original book and re- sized it, then printed it. I scanned a bunch of Little Golden Books too.

This little girl is on my etsy site now. My Etsy.

What's going on with Michaels?

Both Michaels' stores that I shop at are going out of business, the Dearborn and Westland stores. I heard a rumor today that they all are going out. I find this hard to believe. Has anyone else heard anything? I hate to be a rumormonger.

1 comment:

Mike Hartnett said...

I publish Creative Leisure News, an online trade newsletter for retailers, vendors, designers, etc. in the craft business. It's at www.clnonline.com.I've been reporting on the industry -- including Michaels -- for 30 years.

Michaels is not going out of business. Many retailers have gone bankrupt, and many more probably will. Still more may close certain stores that aren't so profitable.

The rumor about Michaels is probably due to its financial structure. Two private equity firms, Bain Capital and The Blackstone Group, bought Michaels a couple of years ago for about $6 billion -- $4 billion of that they borrowed.

Now Michaels has to service that $4 billion debt, plus pay hefty "management fees" to Bain and Blackstone.

Consquently, after you pay the interest on the debt, on top of paying for the inventory, employee salaries, rent, etc., it makes the bottom line look pretty grim. But Michaels execs will tell you the company is generating enough cash flow that they're fine.

If sales go down because of the recession, they may not be so fine. But traditionally the craft industry does comparatively well during recessions.

Mike Hartnett

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