Apple retailers have reacted angrily to the announcement that the vendor may be about to open a 25,000 sq ft store in Covent Garden, as reported by PC Retail last week.
The new store, which would be 5,000 sq ft larger than its flagship store on Regent Street is less than a mile away from two Apple Premium Resellers – Apple’s authorised channel partners.
The two resellers, Albion Computers and Square Group, have vented their fury to VNUnet.
Square Group’s managing director Darren King, whose store is based just down the road on New Oxford Street, said: "Our retail business halved overnight when Apple opened up on Regent Street and has never got going since.
"Apple will not confirm whether or not the reports on Covent Garden are true. It would decimate our remaining retail business and we would have to consider whether or not to keep the store running."
It was a similar story with Albion’s managing director, Howard Cole, who blamed the confusion and cross-over on Apple’s direct arm – based in the US – and its European channel team for not communicating and leading to the conflict in interest.
"We opened this store 16 months ago with Apple’s full blessing. We have made a significant investment from a retail standpoint, so if this does go ahead we will not be pleased."