“Nokia is to shut the doors on its high-tech store in London’s Regent Street after failing to tempt consumers out of the bustling Apple store across the road with interactive translucent walls and a glitzy lounge area,” Nic Fildes reports for The Times.
“The contrasting fortunes of the rival stores reflects the current standing of the two parent companies in the consumer market. The closure of the flagship store is a symbolic defeat for Nokia which has lost ground on its Californian rival in the race to sell smart-phones in the UK as handsets such as N97 have failed to match the success of the iPhone,” Fildes reports.
MacDailyNews Take: “Nokia’s N97 failed to match the success of the iPhone.” There’s a nominee for The Understatement of the Month Award.
Fildes continues, “Ben Wood, an analyst with CCS Insight, said: ‘There was no question that the store was trying to replicate what Apple had done and build up the brand rather than shift devices. The question in why that strategy has worked for one company and not for the other.'”
MacDailyNews Take: That would be because Nokia’s future is all about decline, while Apple’s is all about virtually unlimited promise. This is what happens when you sit around churning out candybar phones with “features” that are largely unusable due in no small part to indecipherable user interfaces while another company works their tails off to totally reinvent and revolutionize the market that you thought you owned. Nokia’s malaise simply has no chance against Apple’s innovation machine. Bloodbath.
Fildes continues, “Poor footfall and anaemic sales at the [£4 million] store are cited as reasons to close the outlet which has been struggling for some time. Nokia closed the top floor of the 8,290 square foot outlet in June… It follows the recent closure of Sony Ericsson’s flagship store in Kensington High Street.”
Fildes reports, “Given the revival of the Regent Street shopping district it is expected that Crown Estates, the landlord, will have little trouble attracting a new tenant.”
Full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: And, who revived Regent Street? Apple. “Retail experts say the arrival of Apple – where takings are a remarkable £60 million a year – acted as a catalyst that allowed Regent Street to throw off its spinsterish image as Oxford Street’s tartan clad maiden aunt,” Jonathan Prynn and Mark Prigg reported for The Evening Standard on Nov. 23rd. “The glass-fronted 28,000 sq ft store opened on 20 November 2004 by Apple’s chief executive Steve Jobs, now generates sales of £2,000 sq ft, almost three times more than Harrods, making it London’s most profitable store. The ‘Apple effect’ has also had a dramatic impact on rents, which have risen around 25 percent since then compared with 0 to 10 percent in the West End as a whole.” Full article, “Apple Store Regent Street is London’s most profitable store; generates 3 times Harrods’ sales,” here.
[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “Lava_Head_UK” for the heads up.]