State College company launches liquidation sale to close

Desert Rug Co. is about to roll up and roll out.

The Persian rug retailer will close by the end of May after 12 years of business in State College, according to manager Amin Rahnama.

The shop was opened in 2004 by Masood Arjmand, who was a longtime Penn State professor and businessman. He died in 2013, leaving the business to his family to run. They recently decided to close it to pursue other ventures, according to Rahnama.

“The customers have been wonderful, and they were so passionate about the products,” Rahnama said.

Arjmand launched the company following his retirement from the university to offer hand-woven Persian rugs that reflected the culture of Iranian origination.

Arjmand told the Centre Daily Times in 2006 that he was drawn by his Iranian heritage to the Persian pieces for a log cabin he was building. He was unable to find Iranian-made rugs due to a two-decade trade embargo that kept rugs out of the United States until 2000 and decimated the Iranian rug industry.

“I looked at it and thought it could be a very good business,” Arjmand told the CDT. “So, I spent all the money I had and bought rugs.”

Arjmand bought 5,000 rugs and launched the business.

Desert Rug Co. recently began a liquidation sale to close the business.

Shawn Annarelli: 814-235-3928, @Shawn_Annarelli