West Acres loses Simply Mac, but new tenant could move in soon

Body: 

FARGO—Another store has closed at West Acres Shopping Center, but mall officials say a possible tenant is already looking at the space.

Simply Mac, a chain store selling Apple products and accessories that also offered tech support and repair service, closed as of Wednesday, Jan. 18, according to Chris Heaton, the mall's senior vice president of property management.

The store opened at West Acres, 3902 13th Ave. S., in August 2014. While Heaton said in an email that the retail option was a good fit there, Apple Inc. ended its national agreement with the chain, meaning it became "impossible" for Simply Mac to continue.

He said employees will be at the store for a few days to help customers pick up repaired items.

The mall has lost several clothing stores in the past month, including Aeropostale and The Limited in late December, while New York & Co. will close Jan. 28. The mall's Sears store, an anchor there for nearly 45 years, will also shut down early this year.

Heaton said West Acres already has a tenant in mind for the soon-to-be vacant Simply Mac space, and an open letter from CEO Brad Schlossman last week suggested "constant change" has been a part of the mall's existence since it opened.

In the letter, Schlossman said a third of West Acre's stores close and another third change, meaning they move, are sold or are rebranded, in any given stretch of 10 years.

"In the retail and shopping center industry, change is the norm," he wrote. "Just as trends change, so does the retail landscape."

Schlossman's letter said while change may be hard, it can also create opportunities for new stores, and all of the vacant spaces now in West Acres "has something brewing."