NEW YORK (AP) — Minecraft: A New York brick factory that makes the world’s most popular digital game has closed its doors, leaving millions of players wondering what went wrong and whether they’ll ever see another brick factory in the world.
New York City has lost a major hub for creative development in the last decade.
The world’s largest online game maker has made millions of dollars in revenue, but now it’s time for its most valuable assets to fall into the hands of a new owner.
It’s a stark contrast to the last-gen boom that brought a lot of creative talent from Silicon Valley to New York.
In December, the company announced that its biggest asset, its factory in New York City’s Queens borough, had been sold.
The factory, which produced about 50,000 bricks a day, is now part of a group of smaller, independently run factories in New Jersey and Massachusetts.
It will be built at the former Galesburg Brick Factory in New Brunswick, New Jersey.
The company says it has not yet decided whether it will continue operations in the New York area.
But the move suggests the business is struggling to compete with the more established brickmakers in Silicon Valley.
The company also has a new president in Steve Martin.
It is unclear whether he will stay in New Zealand or continue to work in New Hampshire.
The factory’s closure was a blow to its nearly 50,500 employees, many of whom are based in the United States.
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the closing last week.
The brick factory’s founder, Frank Galesworth, has told The Associated Press in the past that the company’s demise is a direct result of its failure to compete.
“There was no doubt that we were destined for failure,” he said in an interview last year.
“But the fact that it took this long to close is a sad reflection of what we had accomplished in the industry.
The industry was not only good, but it was ahead of its time.
The best way to make money was to be innovative and do things the right way.”
The company’s fate is a stark reminder of how difficult it is for brickmakers to maintain an independent operation in an increasingly competitive industry.
A recent report by the Pew Charitable Trusts said that bricks made in New England have fallen from a high of more than $3 billion in 2011 to less than $200 million in 2018.
“I’m disappointed and saddened,” said Dan Coughlin, executive director of the New Brunswick Brick and Mortar Association, which represents local brickmakers.
“It’s a loss for all of us.”
The Galesfields, who opened their factory in 1964, had built it into a thriving business, selling thousands of bricks a year to customers across the globe.
The facility also manufactured some of the most popular block pieces, like the iconic cube that dominates Minecraft, and a few other popular blocks like a wooden spoon and a snowman.
But in the years since its inception, the factory has been under increasing scrutiny.
In October, the New Jersey attorney general’s office announced it was looking into possible civil penalties against Galesfelds for allegedly paying employees less than the minimum wage.
The agency also said it was investigating whether employees received overtime pay and other benefits that were illegal under New Jersey law.
New Jersey lawmakers recently passed a bill that would prohibit state agencies from paying employees more than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour.
Galesboro officials have said the state is trying to strike a balance between competing needs.
Galesworth said he doesn’t think it will ever be possible to build a factory in every city in the country.
“I’m not saying there’s not a place in every market, but there’s a limit to what you can do in the space you’ve created,” he told The AP last year in an email.
“It’s the biggest business in the U.S. today,” he added.
“If you don’t think you can build the business in every state, then you’re not going to have a business in a lot.”
Galesburg is one of the largest brickmakers worldwide.
It manufactures bricks for the world in New South Wales, Australia and China.
But it has also made many more products, like blocks for Lego and the game Minecraft, for which Minecraft is the world leader.
In 2013, it bought a major U.K. company called Brickworks, which made the most widely used and popular bricks for Minecraft, to build an independent brick factory.
Brickworks is now owned by a Chinese company.
New Brunswick is a small, mountainous state on the northeast coast of New Jersey, a tourist mecca known for its whitewater kayaking and beachfront restaurants.
The area has become known as the Minecraft State.
Galsworth bought the New Zealand-based company, Galespring Industries, in 2016 and