Indian-based Reliance Retail will shut down 16 of its 20 Apple premium reseller stores because they do not comply with the strict guidelines set out by Apple.
Apple dictates that its stores must conform to a standardized design featuring high ceilings, white LED lighting, wooden floors, specific display tables, and numerous other details.
Reliance has been focusing on rapid expansion, with little regard for Apple’s design requests.
“Complying with such specifications in a market like India may not always make business sense since Apple is still a niche brand and in the current economic environment it becomes an added expense to change store design,” said a senior executive who runs a chain of Apple Stores in the country.
Reportedly Reliance will instead convert the prime location stores into Digital Xpress outlets, which will stock Apple products alongside other leading electronic brands.
According to the Economic Times, this closure may disrupt Apple’s bid to intensify sales in India — which has shown itself to be a growing market for Apple products.
Source: Economic Times