Regular readers know I love a good David and Goliath story, and when the Goliath is Jeff Bezos, all the better:
Amazon is shutting down all its Amazon Books physical bookstores, as well as its Amazon 4-star and Amazon Pop Up shops, which sold a variety of electronics and other hot items.
The closures affect 68 stores across the U.S. and U.K., Amazon said. Closure dates will vary by location and Amazon said it would help affected employees find roles elsewhere in the company. Workers who opt not to stay will be offered severance packages, it said.
And the David in this? The plucky indie book sellers who survived showing that a well-curated list tailored to local tastes with employees who actually read and, you know, love books and provide excellent customer service won.
An Amazon spokesperson said the company “remains committed” to building long-term physical retail concepts and technologies, citing the recently launched Style stores, the first foray into physical clothing stores. The company also said that it would continue to focus on its Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods Market grocery chains, Amazon Go convenience stores, and to embrace the Just Walk Out cashierless technology.
All of these “concepts” are about reducing or eliminating a workforce. Imagine that.