If you were one of the people who paid $1698 for an Apple II with 16k of RAM in 1977, you probably bought it from Team Electronics in Minneapolis, now called FirstTech. The store announced that it will be shutting down at the end of this month after 73 years in business, and will be laying off 75 employees.
The pairing of Apple Computer and Team Electronics first happened at the historic 1977 West Coast Computer Faire, where Team showed a strong interest in the pre-production Apple II. At that time, Team was a chain of retail stores, so Mike Markkula personally flew to Minnesota with the fifth production model and struck up the deal that would be the beginning of Apple’s amazing journey.
FirstTech (formerly Team) stuck with Apple through thick and thin through the next 37 years, but finally realized that they could no longer compete with the other bigger retailers of Apple products, let alone the Apple stores themselves.
Is this just the passing of a relic of a time long since passed? With retail struggling with sales when online shopping is so convenient, is this just another piece of a larger picture of retail stores for electronics evaporating?