I found this interesting – Billiard layoffs get positive spin

Friday, January 09, 2009
By ANGELA CARBONE
acarbone@repub.com
WEST SPRINGFIELD – The closing of Boston Billiard Club on Sunday has had some positive spin-off.

Some of the 42 laid-off employees have already found other work, and Boston Billiard already has located a potential buyer for the club at 885 Riverdale St.

Donald J. Robert, manager of Maximum Capacity at 116 School St., Chicopee, which has been in business for more than four years, said he has received applications from Boston Billiard employees and has hired several.

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“It is always sad to see this happen,” Robert said of the Riverdale Street club closing.

“We have been in family business for over 20 years, so we feel for the whole staff and hope that we can help as many of them out as possible, and give people a fun and safe environment to go to,” he said.

Maximum Capacity is adding four pool tables to the current six and is remodeling the place, Robert said.

“We were already planning on it, but (the closing of Boston Billiard) gave us a sense of urgency,” he said.

Brian E. Hanify, a spokesman for Boston Billiard, said the company shut down three other locations on Sunday. The clubs in Danbury, Conn., Warwick, R.I., as well as the flagship club in Boston were closed, Hanify said. The only clubs open are in Worcester and Nashua, N.H.

The crisis in the banks has had a major impact. “It’s another small business that’s a victim of the banking industry,” he said.

Boston Billiard owners are looking to find interested buyers for its properties, and in most cases, the company is optimistic that buyers will be found.

“We have identified a buyer for the West Springfield site, and the plan is to reopen in the next couple of weeks” if everything goes well, he said.

“Our number one goal is to help our employees,” he said. The club, which offered league play, and a full menu and bar, as well as individual billiards play, employed 42 full- and part-time employees.

Before it closed, the club, which has been on Riverdale since 1993, had 32 pool tables.

Boston Billiard Club President Kurt J. Mathias issued the following statement upon the closing, “We are very sad to be closing our West Springfield location. We appreciate the tremendous hard work of our staff and the loyalty of our Western Massachusetts customers.”

According to the city assessors Web site, the current assessed value of the property is $1,308,900. The site contains 2.55 acres.

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Published in: on January 9, 2009 at 6:15 pm  Leave a Comment  

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