Apple has noted that this week marks the second anniversary of its first
retail store openings. Since then, the company has opened 57 retail stores and plans 20 new ones in the coming year. Apple offered details about those plans, including a schedule for store openings in Chicago, San Francisco, and Tokyo, Japan.
The company’s first two locations: the Glendale Galleria store in Glendale, Calif. and the Tysons Corner store in McLean, Va., opened simultaneously to throngs of enthusiastic Mac fans who wanted to get a glimpse of Apple’s retail efforts. Some folks waited hours to get in the stores, buy merchandise, and check out Apple’s own perspective on how its hardware and software should be marketed to the masses.
Apple CEO Steve Jobs claims that Apple’s retail stores have “changed the face of computer retailing” for people who have visited them.
Apple’s retail stores have sold over US$650 million in products since their opening, and have been visited by more than 15 million customers. The retail stores now employ more than 1,100 employees. What’s more, Apple’s retail stores are located within 15 miles of 90 million people in the U.S.
New stores planned over the course of the next year include Apple’s first downtown Chicago store, located on North Michigan Ave., opening on Friday, June 27. Union Square in San Francisco and the first Apple Store outside the United States, coming to Tokyo, Japan’s Ginza shopping district, are both slated to open in early 2004. Apple calls these forthcoming locations “high profile store formats,” much like the company’s location in New York City’s SoHo neighborhood.