Amazon moves forward with brick-and-mortar, closing 87 pop-ups in April
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Amazon moves forward with brick-and-mortar, closing 87 pop-ups in April

Ecommerce powerhouse Amazon dominates the world of online retail (at least in the west), but if you’ve been paying attention, you’ll realise it’s more than just an internet everything-shop. The company is pushing into new spaces and industries at a phenomenal pace – and one such space is the “traditional” world of offline retail (speech marks in recognition of the fact that when Amazon does something, it’s always leaning away from the traditional and towards the innovative). Now, its brick-and-mortar ambitions move forward yet again, as it closes a pop-up electronic store pilot next month.

Amazon’s share price has appreciated by 10% so far this year

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Source: Yahoo Finance

At the end of last week, an Amazon spokeswoman announced that the company “came to the decision to discontinue our pop-up kiosk program,” claiming that the decision had been taken “after much review.” The program in question had seen Amazon open a number of pop-up stores in shopping malls, Whole Foods Markets, and Kohl’s stores across the US.

Amazon’s pop-up stores were being used to shift the company’s electronic goods, and formed part of its growing offline retail operation. That operation includes 460 Whole Foods locations, which it acquired two years ago, as well as its Amazon Go brand of cashier-less grocery shops. It plans to have about 3,000 of the latter across America by 2021.

While Amazon has chosen to close its pop-up shop program, investors shouldn’t interpret this as a scaling down of its off-line ambitions. On an earnings call last Tuesday, Kohl’s CEO, Michelle Gass, told investors that the chain would be selling Amazon-built electronics itself – in other words, a more expedient route to market has presented itself.

Disclosure
Dominion holds Amazon in its Global Trends Ecommerce Fund.


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