An article in The Sunday Times on December 6, based on information gathered from landlords, reported that Amazon was involved in a secret hunt for high-profile sites across the UK in order to open up its first bricks and mortar stores.
Amazon.com moved very quickly the same day to deny it had any such plans, however. Amazon "has no plans to open stores anywhere in the world," the etailer told Reuters.
The idea, as reported in The Sunday Times article, did seem to make sense, though. "Amazon wants to cash in on rising customer demand for click and collect services where shoppers buy online and then pick up their goods from a nearby store. Consumers who are fed up with waiting at home for deliveries are increasingly choosing to buy online and collecting goods at a time that suits them," the article 'explained'.
The article then quoted a source familiar with Amazon's proposals who said: "When Amazon was just selling books and CDs that fitted easily through the letterbox it was fine to be a web-only business, but now it has branched out into everything from children's bikes to electricals it believes it could boost sales by having stores that offer a collection point for shoppers. It will probably be an Argos-style operation."
All very intriguing...