Blount County shoppers don’t need to worry about major changes coming to the Michaels store at Hamilton Crossing, says the private equity firm that purchased the business last March.

Despite a corporate shakeup, Blount County shoppers don’t need to worry about major changes coming to the Michaels store at Hamilton Crossing.

Apollo Global Management Inc., a private equity firm, agreed to purchase The Michaels Company last March and take it private. The $3.3 billion deal valued the arts and crafts chain at $5 billion and included Apollo acquiring all outstanding shares of Michaels stock for $22 each, according to a release.

Considerable change in a business, such as moving it from publicly traded status to private or vice versa, can have trickle-down effects to local stores like the Hamilton Crossing location, but “there’s not much to report right now,” Michaels Product Communications Manager Rachel Petersen told The Daily Times in an email.

“Things are business as usual across the board,” Petersen emailed.

In fact, Michaels’ sales rose in 2021 when the country was dealing with fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic and many people stayed inside due to the virus, the release states.

Its third-quarter sales rose 15% in 2021, and its online sales more than doubled, according to the release.

“We believe there is a significant opportunity to enhance the Michaels brand, store experience and omnichannel offering to its customers across North America,” Andrew S. Jhawar, Apollo senior partner and head of its retail and consumer group, said in the release when the deal was announced.

“Our team at Apollo expects to leverage many of the strategies from our funds’ successful investments in other specialty retailers and grocers with Michaels.”

Michaels CEO Ashley Buchanan initially expressed optimism in the acquisition, also praising the company’s efforts as its business boomed in 2021.

“Our Michaels strategy and the work that we have done in the past year have led to phenomenal business results, strengthened our core business and positioned Michaels for long-term sustainable growth,” Buchanan said in the release.

“As a private company, we will have the financial flexibility to invest in, expand, and improve our retail and digital platforms.”

Buchanan told Forbes in October that Apollo has since “bought into our strategy and in fact they want us to move faster” and “my experience is that they’ve been fantastic.”

Michaels, 111 Hamilton Crossing Drive, Alcoa, is one of multiple stores in the shopping center at Hamilton Crossing. It sells arts and craft supplies for needle work, wood, paper and textiles, plus wedding and birthday supplies, according to the company’s website.

“Michaels crafts store located at 111 Hamilton Crossing Dr, Alcoa, TN, has what you need to bring your creativity to life,” the website states.

Tyler is a sports reporter at The Daily Times. A University of Tennessee alumnus, he previously was the newspaper's cops/courts reporter, as well as the sports editor at The Advocate & Democrat, a fellow APG publication.

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