An 85-year-old commercial printer on Union Street closed last month — two years after it was added to Schenectady’s Empire Zone.
Capital District Enterprises, which operates as Acme Press, filed Sunday for Chapter 7 liquidation in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Albany. The filing capped the Capital Region’s loss of a second major commercial print shop this year. It follows the abrupt February closure of Tech Valley Printing in Watervliet.
“He just couldn’t afford it anymore,” said James Quick, president of the Graphic Communications International Union Local 259-M.
Quick’s union represented six workers at Acme. When the city in 2006 added Acme to the Schenectady/Glenville Empire Zone — affording it tax benefits in return for promised investments in labor or capital — the printer employed 11 full-time workers. But a 2007 Empire Zone annual report showed Acme’s work force had dropped to nine. Schenectady Empire Zone Coordinator did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
Quick said higher printing costs and the loss of customers contributed to Acme’s demise. For about two decades, the Rotterdam-based Price Chopper contracted Acme to print brochures and fliers, chain spokeswoman Mona Golub said.
Printer attorney Robert Rock and Capital District Enterprises President David Giminiani did not immediately return calls seeking comment. Acme’s phone number has been disconnected.
Capital District Enterprises cited in its bankruptcy petition no assets and $520,000 in debts. The company’s leading secured creditor is First Niagara Bank, which holds a $287,000 claim and $165,000 security agreement blanket lien. Acme also allegedly owes Local 259-M $2,700 in dues, pensions and fees plus $10,000 in real property taxes and 6,700 in school taxes.
Schenectady lost another commercial printer in 2005, when Tech Valley acquired State Color on State Street. Tech Valley’s surprise closure, which a bankruptcy court-appointed trustee is investigating for possible fraudulent relations with a Utica printer, left over 50 workers unemployed.