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Doors close at Crazy Mountain


Innovative Attica business falls victim to economy after 15 years



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March 04, 2009
ATTICA TWP. — Crazy Mountain Imports is the latest local business to close its doors.

A person answering the phone at their Imlay City Rd. corporate office on Monday confirmed the home decor and giftware company was closed indefinitely.

According to a Feb. 24 posting on the Giftware News Web site, Crazy Mountain was forced to close its doors when their bank called in its loan.

"According to sources, the bank the company had dealt with for about 10 years was purchased by another bank and loan officers familiar with Crazy Mountain's loan and business were let go," Giftware News reported.

"Loan problems ensued and the bank ultimately called (in) the Crazy Mountain loan. To cover the loan, the assets were turned over to the bank and Crazy Mountain shut its doors."

Opened in 1995, the business imported and distributed

l.e.d candles, picture frames, fleece throws, kitchen textiles, stationery, candle warmers, holiday decorations, baskets, jewelry, lamps and other various home decor items featuring the designs of many popular artists including Marjolein Bastin, Jan Shade Beach, Angela Anderson, Michael Stoebner and Jim Shore.

Giftware News said Crazy Mountain was well-known in the industry.

In addition to their Attica facility, Crazy Mountain also has an Atlanta Gift Mart in Atlanta, Georgia, the Merchandise Mart in Chicago, Illinois and a showroom in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

"It's a really sad situation when the economy has deteriorated to the point that it couldn't support a company that was good for this community," Attica Twp. Supervisor Al Ochadleus said.

It was only three years ago that the company seemed poised to continue growing. Ochadleus said Crazy Mountain had purchased the candlemaking facilities just east of their own building and requested land be rezoned for industrial purposes, possibly one day creating an industrial park.

Other industry publications, such as Gifts and Decorative Accessories, said Crazy Mountain owners Andy Niemeyer, Bob Annarino and Greg Roth entered the industry with a novel approach. They sold their products during two 'windows of opportunity'— January to April for the Christmas season and June to September for their 'everyday' line. They pre-booked orders to save on costs and the need for inventory. This approach also allowed them to reinvent their lines every year, the publication said.

The principles of the business were to deliver value, fair prices, innovative products, exceptional quality, on time shipping and to treat customers with honesty and respect, as stated on their Web site at www.crazymountain.com.

Their Crazy Mountain Candle Company division was started in 2001.

An Internet search also shows that Niemeyer invented a candle warmer for which Crazy Mountain was the patent's assignee. The patent was filed in 2005 and stated the warmer was intended to let users enjoy a scented candle in their home without the danger of an open flame or smoke.

Although Crazy Mountain was a distributor, they opened their warehouse to the public every November for a two-day holiday sale featuring Christmas and gift items.

Employment figures for the company weren't immediately available.

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