Redmond claims that it’s been planning to plant a full store in Manhattan for five years, and the company’s now discovered the current location of the Fendi store at 677 Fifth Avenue.
Renting the location for Microsoft’s store will likely cost the company $2,749 per square foot (on average) for the location, but Microsoft is willing to pay it. Fifth Avenue is the ideal place for companies to market their brand and their products, with both “haves” and “have-nots” walking along Fifth Avenue.
“As our first flagship store, it will serve as the centerpiece of our Microsoft Stores experience. This is a goal we’ve had since day one – we were only waiting for the right location. And now we have it,” said Microsoft retail stores corporate vice president David Porter.
“It’s an international location, and Microsoft is an international brand,” said SCG Retail executive vice president Chase Welles.
Microsoft’s full-line store will be five blocks away from Apple’s Manhattan retail store, and reports say that both Microsoft and Apple will compete for customers and profits once more. In the US retail store race, however, Microsoft has room for growth: while Microsoft has 104 retail stores in the US as of 2009, Apple has 254 stores. Microsoft also has 600 Best Buy in-store locations and plans to open 10 more full-line stores in both the US and Canada just in time for the Thanksgiving holiday.
Microsoft under CEO Satya Nadella has made some positive changes since his rise to the head of Microsoft. Microsoft Office for iPad has been a huge hit for those who believed Microsoft should’ve brought the software to the iPad experience years ago, and the company’s increased OneDrive cloud storage offering has placed Microsoft into the cloud storage service competition.
Online chat service Skype has been one of Microsoft’s most famous Internet offerings, apart from the Xbox One – which continues to be forward-thinking with its Kinect motion sensor and the IllumiRoom experience Microsoft has showcased in days past.
Now, with a store on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue, Microsoft is making itself more accessible to the public and making the statement that it’s here to stay.