Amazon to expand real-world store presence

By AFP   March 6, 2019 | 08:03 pm PT
Amazon to expand real-world store presence
The logo of Amazon is seen at the company logistics centre in Boves, France, August 8, 2018. Photo by Reuters/Pascal Rossignol
Amazon on Wednesday unveiled plans to open more bookstores and "4-star" shops selling only the best-rated products, while closing its smaller "pop-up" kiosks in the U.S.

"After much review, we came to the decision to discontinue our pop-up kiosk program, and are instead expanding Amazon Books and Amazon 4-star," a spokeswoman told AFP. "We look forward to opening additional locations of both stores this year."

According to CNBC, the 87 pop-up stores in the U.S. will close next month. Launched in 2014, the stands -- located in shopping centers or in other stores, such as Amazon-owned Whole Foods -- offered the company's services and electronics.

The announcement confirms Amazon's goal to strengthen its real-world presence with more, larger physical outlets.

The Wall Street Journal reported last week that the firm, owned by billionaire Jeff Bezos, plans to open a supermarket chain separate from Whole Foods -- with the first expected in Los Angeles at the end of this year.

The firm opened its first "4-star" shop in New York in September, with stock made up solely of products given a four and five-star rating on its website.

In early 2018, the group also opened its first "Amazon Go" store in Seattle -- a grocery outlet without a checkout, where purchases are recorded by cameras and sensors.

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