Blackwell's Book Services will close its Academic Book Center warehouse in Portland, Ore., at the end of the year, merging all its North American book operations into its Blackwood, N.J., distribution center.

The decision will affect about 75 employees, with some offered transfers and some laid off, said a company executive who asked not to be identified. The center will accept book orders until November 11 and continue fulfilling orders until December 31. Blackwell's acquired Academic Book Center in 1999.

Company president and CEO Dan Halloran was out of the country and could not be reached for comment last week. In a written statement, he said consolidating the warehouses "is the right decision for the business."