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Reverse Engineering: E-Behemoth Amazon Ironically Opens Brick-And-Mortar Store In Manhattan

Reverse Engineering: E-Behemoth Amazon Ironically Opens Brick-And-Mortar Store In Manhattan
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Momentum Strategies That Continue To Dominate Through January (Seeking Alpha), Inc., (NASDAQ: AMZN), which is used to putting bricks-and-mortar enterprises out of business, opened an actual physical store in New York City and likely will continue to build a retail presence in other locations, a group of Pacific Crest analysts led by Brent Bracelin said Friday.

The 4,000-square-foot store in midtown Manhattan’s Columbus Circle had its grand opening Thursday and included what the analysts said were a variety of impulse-buy items near the checkout, including coloring books, pen markers and a hair-drain trap.

“Each one of the items was specifically identified as an item that has highly positive feedback from Amazon customers,” the analysts wrote. “Pricing is comparable to for Amazon Prime members and list price for non-prime members, but we noted salespeople actively encouraging non-Prime members to start a trial membership.”

Not Everybody Is Happy About The Store

The store had a “significant area” dedicated to devices, such as the Kindle/Fire tablets and the Echo personal assistant. The analysts said, “The format is well suited for discovery and browsing, with books being displayed cover forward, highly rated items highlighted, and an ‘if you like this, you will like this’ book discovery area.”

The store is Amazon’s seventh, and the Bracelin group said analysts continue to believe that Amazon will continue to build stores, with outlets expected in Manhattan and New Jersey.

Quartz, in its review of the store’s debut, bemoaned the fading fortunes of traditional bookstores unable to compete with the Amazon behemoth. It said, “The layout creates clutter that mirrors Amazon’s own site, except without the ease of actually getting the book you want quickly and cheaply.”

Yahoo Finance suggested the store is meant more for marketing the brand.

“Opening up physical bookstores may look like a strange move for the company accused of killing off physical bookstores,” the site said. “But the stores serve a number of strategic purposes for Amazon, and selling books may be the least of them.”

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Image Credit: "Columbus Circle in NYC" By TarHeel4793 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

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