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A Canton-based developer says his company plans to turn the former Longaberger Basket Co.’s iconic headquarters into a luxury hotel.


The handbag and accessory company Thirty-One Gifts has announced a big move: While its headquarters will stay nearby, moving from Easton to New Albany, its distribution center will relocate to Texas, shedding 800 Central Ohio warehouse jobs in the process.


It may be the end of the road for The Longaberger Company.

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Twenty years after reaching the peak of its popularity, the Longaberger Basket Company is moving out of its iconic basket-shaped building and looking for a fresh start.


The basket-shaped Ohio building used by employees of The Longaberger Co. for two decades will be vacant by week's end as remaining staff move to another location, and officials still don't know what will happen to the unusual structure.

Newark based Longaberger Baskets says poor economic conditions are forcing the company to lay off 275 workers. 120 of the jobs will be in management; 175 jobs will be in manufacturing and distribution. The company is also cutting the pay of all salaried employees - even senior executives. A spokesman says company CEO Tami Longaberger will take a 15% pay cut.

The Longaberger basket company now says it will lay off nearly 800 workers next month.

More than a month ago, the basketmaker warned that as many as 970 workers could lose their jobs unless sales picked up.

The company has about 54-hundred workers.

The 784 workers who will lose their jobs on September ninth work in the company's manufacturing operations.

During the course of the summer about 100 employees accepted voluntary layoffs.

A company spokeswoman says slow sales, rising health care and energy costs all contributed to the layoffs.

The Longaberger Company said Tuesday it is notifying 970 workers that they might be laid off in September if sales don't increase.

Privately held Longaberger says sales have been lower than expected for more than a year. Company spokeswoman Bonny Fowler says there are almost certain to be some layoffs, although the number isn't clear.

People affected would be basket makers and workers who support them.

The company currently employs nearly 5,400 people.

Fowler declined to say how much of a sales increase is needed to avoid or minimize the cuts.