Papyrus to close all stores, including its 2 Berkeley locations

Brian Bi/Staff

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Bay Area stationery retailer Papyrus is closing all U.S. stores, including the chain’s two Berkeley locations.

Schurman Retail Group, which owns and operates more than 300 stores including Papyrus, announced that the company “initiated an orderly liquidation of its business to maximize value for all stakeholders,” according to a press release. The company plans to close all 254 Papyrus retail locations in the United States and Canada in the upcoming four to six weeks.

Papyrus posted a social media statement, thanking its customers for their loyalty throughout the years.

“Unfortunately, we regret that we are closing our stores,” Papyrus said in the social media post. “We hope that through our artistic, thoughtful greeting cards and our personal expression products that we were able to inspire you to celebrate and honor the special people in your lives, creating meaningful moments along the way.”

Papyrus was founded by Marcel and Margrit Schurman in 1950 as an importer and wholesaler of greeting cards. The company saw that there was a market in the United States for fine art-inspired greeting cards, according to the press release. Since then, the company has operated multiple brands such as Papyrus, Paper Destiny, NIQUEA.D, Carlton Cards and American Greetings.

All of the company’s merchandise is on sale for 20% to 40% off. As of Jan. 24, all sales are final.

Papyrus has been in business for about 60 years. The first Papyrus retail store opened in Berkeley in 1973. There are two locations in Berkeley — one on Fourth Street and the other on College Avenue.

Dominique Schurman, the founders’ daughter, joined the company in 1982 and became CEO of Schurman Retail Group in 1991. She thanked all of the Papyrus employees for their hard work.

“I want to thank all of our employees for your hard work and commitment to making our brands so cherished and beloved by our loyal and valued customers,” Schurman said in the press release.

Papyrus is not the first stationery store in Berkeley to close.

The Staples location on Shattuck Avenue closed its doors in November 2019 as a result of declining sales. Staples was one of many businesses in Berkeley that closed because of a movement away from retail. Online shopping has made it difficult for local retailers. The rise of e-commerce and increased labor costs and rent have caused many businesses to close.

“While this is not the outcome any of us wanted, I know that I can count on all of our employees to lead us through this process with the same diligence, responsibility and commitment to excellence you have always demonstrated,” Schurman said in the press release.

Contact Marc Escobar at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter at @mescobar_dc.