Best Buy launched in the UK to much fanfare and promised to change the way British consumers shop for electronics. Now we have news that Best Buy is losing millions in the UK, and changes are needed.
The company is in a joint venture with the Carphone Warehouse, and has seen the cost of trying to get a foot hold in the UK an expensive one. It has been announced that in its first year the group lost £62.2m according to an article on What Hi-Fi Sound and Vision.
At the end of the last financial year there were only six Best Buy stores open in the country, and has spent a great deal in setting up plans for a bigger number in future expansion. The group now has ten stores trading with another opening soon. But now the company has put a brake on plans to have up to eighty more stores.
There is also talk the company is thinking of scaling back its current stores, and looking at different store formats. If the company does start shutting stores it won’t be the first time as it recently shut stores in China and Turkey.
In the UK Best Buy biggest rivals are the likes of Curry’s and Comets, who themselves have seen sales drop off with the current financial climate. Many consumers now turn to the internet when buying electronics goods, as they can be cheaper and even have free delivery.
But having smaller more personal stores could be a good thing; many high end Hi-Fi dealers may not have the cheapest prices, but go that extra mile with customer service. Many independent retailers can offer auditions for equipment with knowledgeable advice with set up, and after sales support.
Do you prefer the stack them high sell them cheap approach? Or do you like to get advice and after sales care when buying tech?