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Amazon shuts down clothing stores as it shifts retail strategy

Amazon Style store

Amazon shuts down apparel stores as it realigns physical retail strategy

Amazon has plans to close two brick-and-mortar apparel stores, marking a major shift in its physical retail strategy.

The stores in Columbus, Ohio, and Glendale, California would shutter by November 9. 

This decision comes just a year and a half after Amazon first ventured into physical fashion retail with the opening of these locations.

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Amazon spokesperson Kristen Kish said in a statement. “Physical retail remains an important part of our business, and we’re continuing to invest in growing our grocery stores business, which spans Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods Market, Amazon Go, and third-party partnerships.”

The company will continue to invest in expanding its grocery stores business.

The line covers Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods Market, Amazon Go, and third-party partnerships. 

This move aligns with Amazon’s broader retail strategy, which aims to provide a more diverse and efficient shopping experience for customers.

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Amazon originally introduced its Amazon Style concept in January 2022, followed by the opening of the Glendale store in May 2022. 

The launch of these stores represented the company’s foray into selling clothing, footwear, and accessories in a physical retail environment.

This follows Amazon’s earlier closures of various retail chains, including Amazon Books, 4-star, and Pop Up stores in March.

Cost-saving plan

It was part of a cost-saving and efficiency-focused initiative. 

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The e-commerce giant reduced warehouse space, discontinued some unproven ventures, and laid off almost 27,000 employees in a broad restructuring. 

Amazon temporarily paused the expansion of its Amazon Go cashierless stores and Fresh supermarkets.

While the closure of the Amazon Style stores reflects a strategic shift, the firm remains committed to retail innovation. 

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It recently introduced two redesigned stores in Chicago and plans to continue opening new locations while evolving its Fresh grocery chain.

Kish said Amazon is working with the employees impacted by the Amazon Style store closures.

He said the firm is allowing them to transition to other internal roles.

Those who decide to leave will be provided with severance packages.

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