Feeds

Apple retail chain to open doors in April

Gateway-style Mac stores coming

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Apple's much-rumoured High Street retail operation is inching towards a launch, with three stores set to open their doors in California next April.

The first store can be found at the corner of University and Kipling in Palo Alto, the San Jose Mercury News revealed on Friday. The second will be located in Glendale, though the location of store three isn't known, according to the newspaper.

The source is pretty solid: Palo Alto's senior town planner, Amy French, said Apple had applied for permission to modify the property at the Palo Alto location to create a 6500sq ft bricks'n'mortar version of the online AppleStore. French said Apple was aiming for an April opening, presumably from the company's application.

Apple's interest in Gateway-style retail outlets has been hinted at since June 1999, particularly after Gateway said that its stores generate as much margin as its online sales.

Apple has strong connections with CompUSA and Sears, both major US retailers, and this could explain why it's taken the Mac maker so long to formulate its retail strategy: how to build its own chain without souring relations?

As Sears and CompUSA focus mostly on the company's consumer products, there is room for a more professional-oriented chain. Then again, Apple could argue that its stores are more about brand-building than revenue generation, and so may be able to persuade its partners that it will compete with them fairly. Either way, it's already competing with them, through the online AppleStore.

In September, Gateway boss Jeffrey Weitzen complained that Apple had been trying to poach his retail staff. "Apple is serious [about opening its own stores] because they've been trying to hire our people," he told the Wall Street Journal.

And Apple has plenty of senior retail expertise in place already. Apple has signed up Allen Moyer, formerly of Sony US; Ron Johnson, merchandising director at Target; and in recent months George Blankenship, a real-estate executive from The Gap. The Gap's CEO, 'Mickey' Drexler, sits on Apple's board. ®

Related Stories

Apple retail chain plan back on agenda
Apple ponders own US retail chain

Whitepapers

SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.