Sony Quietly Tries Retail Stores

“Since opening its first store last year, Sony has quietly opened stores in seven other cities. The Japanese giant will open in its 11th and 12th U.S. stores this month, in Denver and Las Vegas,and expects to have about 30 Sony Style stores in the United States by April 2006.

Some retailers that sell Sony products worry they will lose sales. They also worry that if the stores are successful, other manufacturers will open stores, too.

“We’re going to watch very closely what they do with these stores,” said Tom Campbell, vice president of Ken Cranes Home Electronics Inc., a chain of eight stores in Southern California. “The manufacturer is becoming a potential competitor.” “

Obviously a lot of retailers are not happy by Sony’s move. You are supposed to sell Sony products, not compete directly with them. Apple has been pretty hush hush with the results of their retail stores, but players like Gateway have already found this technique more than difficult, forcing them to close. Dell has ventured out a little with kiosks, and rumor has it that Dell may expand to include full-blown stores as well. Only time will tell how Sony does.

Read the rest of this story at The Houston Chronicle

Source: Associated Press