Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Disassembly complete: Heathkit is no more

The St. Joseph Township company that delighted hobbyists for decades and at one time employed up to 1,800 people locally is selling off what’s left, the Herald Palladium reports. The remnants of a once-proud company with a long history in the Twin Cities are now on the auction block. Owner Don Desrochers confirmed this week that Heathkit is dead. Last known as Heathkit Educational Systems, the company that once employed hundreds of people has closed after defaulting on a lease at 2024 Hawthorne Ave. in St. Joseph Township. The work force at the end was a half-dozen. In a phone interview from his home in Dallas, Desrochers said he has filed for bankruptcy and a bank now owns what’s left of Heathkit. Several bank-seized items are being sold in online auctions. Lori Marciniak, Heathkit’s last president and CEO, declined to comment on the company’s demise. Desrochers said she and the remaining handful of workers did a good job to the end. “The situation was purely one of the economy,” he said. “Heathkit (Educational Systems) was primarily dependent upon federal and state funding for schools. Spending in education continued to drop down, and it was economically unfeasible to continue operating.” The Heath Co. was founded in 1926 as an aircraft company but shifted its focus several times to remain competitive. After World War II the company switched to the electronics industry and bought a large surplus of wartime electronic parts to build kits. The company once employed as many as 1,800 people in the Twin Cities. Read the full Herald Palladium article at: http://www.heraldpalladium.com/news/local/disassembly-complete-heathkit-is-no-more/article_c00ffaac-d15b-11e1-a9e7-0019bb2963f4.html Found on: http://www.southgatearc.org/index.htm

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