Mad Macs closing Williamstown store, merging into 1 location at Pittsfield HQ

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PITTSFIELD — Berkshire County's only Apple computer sales and service business is returning to a single-store operation to better serve its expanding clientele in a tri-state region.

Mad Macs will gradually merge its Williamstown outlet with its headquarters at the Allendale Shopping Center, closing its Northern Berkshire location within a month, according to co-owner Scott Kirchner.

"Retail has changed as a lot of customers are going online," Kirchner told The Eagle on Monday. "It no longer made sense to have a second store."

Opening in April 2014, the Williamstown store at 36 Spring St. — a space leased from Williams College — initially had five employees. Over time some of the staff found other jobs in the computer field or relocated to the Pittsfield store, Kirchner said. The remaining full-timer in Williamstown will stay with the company, which has 10 employees.

On Monday, the Williamstown shop reduced its hours to 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. The Pittsfield store hours remain unchanged: 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.

Kirchner and partner Daryl Corbett founded their computer business in 1998, starting off on Tyler Street, then moving to East Housatonic Street, before ending up North Street in May 2011.

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Kirchner says moving to Allendale in April 2018 tripled the company's repair service and retail space, allowing Mad Macs to continue branching out beyond the Apple brand.

"We've been known as the Apple guys for 20 years," Kirchner said. "Two years ago we expanded into other technologies: We're doing PC sales and service. We're the IT department for small businesses; we do networking and audio/visual installations."

Mad Macs also travels, with clients within a 50-mile radius in the Albany, N.Y., area, southern Vermont and the Pioneer Valley in Western Massachusetts.

"It makes more sense for us to expand in Albany than have a second store," Kirchner said. "It helps that we are centrally located here at Allendale to serve our clientele."

Downsizing to a single bricks-and-mortar operation wasn't an overnight decision, he said. The owners agonized about leaving Williamstown, where they had established a presence they plan to maintain.

"We hemmed and hawed about this for two years; we didn't want to give up the location," Kirchner said. "We still want to serve North County and help the customers we have and hopefully new ones."

Dick Lindsay can be reached at rlindsay@berkshireeagle.com and 413-496-6233.


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