More Apple Stores are opening every month, and for most people this a great thing: you get the Apple experience right next to your front door. For others however, like this Apple reseller in Arizona, it signals the end. iStore has been driven out of business mostly, according to president Steve Walker, because of Apple’s Stores opening in the area, making it ‘nearly impossible to sustain profitability’.
Walker, who wrote a farewell letter on the store’s website, definitely makes a good point. Nowadays, basing your business solely on reselling Apple goods is a flawed plan, as it is impossible to compete against buying it directly from the company via an official store. Before Apple Stores, the problem clearly didn’t exist, and reselling Apple was even a decent business to be getting into.
As he writes:
With the gradual opening of what is now 5 corporate Apple Stores here in the Phoenix area and corresponding changes at Apple with their reseller relations, Apple has made it nearly impossible to sustain profitability while providing great customer service. As many of you have experienced (most recently with the 3rd Gen iPad), Apple consistently withholds product from their independent dealers while providing abundantly to their own corporate Apple Stores. For this reason and many others that would take too long to enumerate and, quite frankly, you probably don’t care about, we have chosen to permanently close our stores.
It’s sad to see, but it’s predictable, and I’d expect many more resellers who rely solely on Apple to also be closing their doors soon, even if in some areas without Apple stores they will probably survive.