Mad Macs to open new store in Williamstown


WILLIAMSTOWN -- The county's only authorized retail outlet for Apple computer products and accessories is expanding its services into Northern Berkshire County.

Mad Macs of Pittsfield plans to open a second store on Spring Street in Williamstown during the first quarter of 2014.

"We haven't nailed down the date at this time," said Mad Macs' co-owner Scott Kirchner. "But we will be taking control of the space by months' end."

Kirchner said Mad Macs is currently finalizing a three-year lease with Williams College, which owns the space at 36 Spring St. in the Adams block of the town's main commercial thoroughfare. It will replace The School for Style, a clothing store that opened as a pop-up shop in August, which is seeking another location with in the town.

Williams owns roughly 40 percent of the retail space on Spring Street, according to Frederick Puddester, the college's vice president of finance and administration.

Whenever openings occur on Spring Street, Puddester said the college is always interested in encouraging the establishment of new businesses like Mad Macs that "meet the diverse needs of our students, faculty and alums."

"That's what we're always looking for when we have a vacant space," he said.

Kirchner said the Williamstown store will be a full retail establishment and offer the same products and services that Mad Macs offers at its store on North Street in Pittsfield. Mad Macs stocks several Apple products, except for the iPhone, although it does offer iPhone accessories.

Mad Macs was primarily a computer services and support business for the first 13 years of its existence, but applied to be an authorized reseller of Apple products when Kirchner and co-owner Daryl Corbett moved the firm from East Housatonic Street to North Street in May 2011. They received that retail designation from Apple in April 2012.

When the retail operation became successful, Kirchner said he and Corbett began thinking of opening a second store. Following a countywide search, the business partners settled on Williamstown as the location.

"The Williams market bodes well for us," he said. "There's an especially high concentration of Apple usage between the students and faculty at Williams.

"They have no authorized (Apple) service up there," he said. "We felt that it would probably be more convenient for people in that area. ... The college expressed an interest in having us up there as well."

With the new store, Kirchner said Mad Macs plans to hire between three and six new employees, with at least three of them full-time positions. The new store won't have a full staff when it opens, but Kirchner said it will operate six days a week at the beginning.

"We've doubled our staff in the last year and a half and expect to triple it with the new store company-wide," Kirchner said.

He said Mad Macs would also like to expand into South County.

"We'll take our time, but our goal is to have South County operations at some point," Kirchner said.

To reach Tony Dobrowolski:
(413) 496-6224


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