Jeff Bezos is the master of ecommerce, but is he ready to take on Walmart and others in the brick-and-mortar world?
In conversation with Charlie Rose, Bezos addressed the question.
We would love to but only if we can have a truly differentiated idea. We don't do a me-too product offering very well. When I look at physical retail stores, it's very well served. The people who operate physical retail stores are very good at it. The question we would always have before we would embark on such an thing is what's the idea, what would we do that would be different, how would it be better... we don't want to be redundant.Asked if a retail store would have any advantage other than being a profit center, Bezos said, "If a hundred companies are doing something, and you're hundred and first, you're not really bringing any value to society. And, typically the business results are not very good for something like that.
"We want to do something that is uniquely Amazon, and if we can find that idea, and we haven't found that idea yet, we would love to open Amazon stores."
Given how Apple has succeeded so brilliantly with is branded stores -- holding the top spot for retail sales per square foot --Bezos might be tempted to build Amazon stores around the expanding Kindle line and other devices, such as smartphones, that the company might bring to market. While customers are in the stores, they might also check out goods from partners who would pay handsomely to be in Amazon's retail space.