While the upcoming
products made up the bulk of
Peter Oppenheimer’s presentation
at a San Francisco investment conference Tuesday, the Apple CEO also offered a glimpse into the company’s retail plans for 2007.
Speaking at the Morgan Stanley Technology Conference, Oppenheimer said Apple plans to continue opening stores “at a measured and controlled pace,” with 35 to 40 new stores slated to open this year. Around 10 of those planned openings will come outside of the United States. Currently, Apple has 20 stores outside of the U.S.—four in Canada, seven in Japan, and nine in England.
“You’ll see us open addition countries in the not-too-distant future,” Oppenheimer told conference attendees.
What’s more, Apple is going back and renovating some of its older stores “to take advantage of new innovations that we have in our more current stores,” Oppenheimer said.
“In this last year, we’ve been investing in the stores, and I continue to see us wanting to do that to make them into a great place for customers,” Oppenheimer said. “[Senior vice president of retail] Ron [Johnson] will not compromise on the service level in the stores, and we’ve been keeping the payroll up.”
In Apple’ fiscal first quarter ending in December, the Apple stores sold more Macs in total and on a per-store basis than they did for the same period the previous year, Oppenheimer said; he added that year-over-year iPod sales were down at the brick-and-mortar stores due to “the broader channel we had and our ability to better stock it this past year.” During its
quarterly conference call with analysts in January, Apple reported that 28 million people visited the Apple stores during the fiscal first quarter.
“I’m very, very happy with the financial performance of the retail stores,” Oppenheimer said Tuesday.
Apple currently has 173 retail stores, with the most recent one
opening in Estero, Fla.