Ahrendts views the company’s newly redesigned retail outlets not just as stores, but as the company’s next big products…she and Apple view their stores as potential town squares within each of the cities they reside.
“The store is now the biggest product we produce and we have five new features [for iPhones and iPads]. Accessories are avenues, and the huge digital screen in each store is the forum,” Ahrendts said.
By the end of this year, 95 stores will be fully redesigned with this vision, the first of which were the San Francisco Union Square location and the London Regent Street outpost. The community aspect to each store is key, Ahrendts said, with these town squares serving as educational centers.
An interesting metaphor. It’ll be interesting to see how this is implemented.
There are nearly 500 Apple stores worldwide, and retail sales are responsible for some 18% of the company’s $233.7 billion in sales, amounting to $42 billion in yearly revenue.
That 18% number is impressive, given the relatively small number of stores per consumer in the world.