Industry News

Michaels Stores has filed with regulators to raise up to $500 million in an Initial Public Offering (IPO) that could be one of the year’s largest IPOs in the retail sector, writes Reuters. The offering comes six years after private equity owners Blackstone and Bain purchased the Texas-based arts and crafts company for more than $6 billion. Michaels operates 1,066 retail stores in 49 U.S. states and in Canada. It posted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of $661 million in 2011 and had total debt of $3.5 billion as of Jan. 28, 2012.

With sadness we report the passing of Ainslie Smith Quick, mother of Jack Quick the head of Rhino Art in Encinitas, CA. She was 81 years old and throughout her life she was forever close to her community’s art scene and had dedicated her life to all things creative.

The NAMTA Board election winners have been announced. All the new board members will take office at the meeting held at the NAMTA Convention in Orlando, FL in May of this year.
Domestic Retailers
:  Phillip Forstall, Forstall Art Supplies; Howard Krinsky, Binders Art and Frame
International Retailer
:  Fred Gold, Above Ground Art Supplies
Independent Rep
 Rick Comerford, Grimstad Comerford Group

The seven Ben Franklin stores in the Richmond, VA  area will take on the name of their new parent, A.C. Moore Arts and Crafts. The conversions are part of an expansion of A.C. Moore by its new owners lead by Pepi Piperno of Sbar’s in New Jersey.

Well, the day has finally come! Tess Caldwell our fearless, smart and passionate leader has officially retired. Tess joined Artcraft in Georgia when it was founded in 1974 and was an integral part of the company’s success from day one. When MacPherson’s and Artcraft merged in 2000, Tess was key to the successful integration of the two companies. She headed the Atlanta branch of MacPherson’s and later became the leader of our Key Account management effort. We will miss her warm heart, great sense of humor, dedication and huge contribution to MacPherson’s as well as the entire art materials industry.

Eileen Miller

At Michaels, Brigid English has been promoted to Vice President – Private Brands and Global Sourcing, reporting to Wilson Zhu. Her responsibilities include strategic oversight and partnership for  Frames & International, General Crafts and Fine Art and Craft Paint. Susan Allison has been promoted to Director Private Brands and Global Sourcing reporting to Brigid English. Susan will support the Frames and International Division. Eileen Miller Director Private Brands and Global Sourcing will now be responsible for Seasonal reporting to Kris Ventura.

It is with great pleasure that we announce the selection of Edo van der Burgt as Vice President, Product Strategy for MacPherson’s. Edo joined the Company in November 2006 and has served MacPherson’s and our customers in several important roles from his vast experience in retail merchandising, product design and quality control.

Bill Kaplan

Bill Kaplan has joined MacPherson’s as our Merchandise Manager. Bill spent the first 14 years of his career at Standard Brands Paint Company in various management positions including District Sales Manager, Director of Distribution and General Merchandise Manager and comes to us with broad experience as a senior level manager in the home improvement store channel.

Former Michaels Exec VP of Merchandising Harvey Kanter was named CEO of Blue Nile, an e-commerce jewelry retailer located in the Seattle, WA area.

At JoAnn Stores, Joshua Belt has been promoted from Sr. Assistant Buyer to Buyer of Foodcrafting, Bridal, Dec Paint, Clay, Fine Art, replacing Eric Bell who has been promoted to Divisional Merchandise Manager for Crafts.

Here’s something very cool. The TED award for “Ads Worth Spreading” recognizes great ideas in advertising, and Sharpie was named one of 10 recipients of the 2012 award for the Sharpie’s webisode featuring pen cup artist “Cheeming Boey”. Ideas are what make the world go round. They’re the foundation of the future. They’re what inspire us to dream big dreams and climb big mountains and solve big problems. Every once in a while an idea comes along and somebody notices. It showcases Boey as he takes us on his artistic journey and the role Sharpie played along the way. Check out the webisode below:

TED is a nonprofit group devoted to ideas. Since it started in 1984, it has become a driving force in advancing open dialogue, creativity and innovation in the areas of Technology, Entertainment and Design.

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