A reader sent Circling the News a March 2 story that has appeared on Reuters, USA Today and CNBC, noting that Amazon will shut 68 retail stores, including Amazon Books, 4-Star, and Pop-up Shops.
The story states that closures will affect stores across the U.S. and the U.K., with various closure dates. According to its website, Amazon has 24 brick-and-mortar bookstores, including three in Los Angeles: the Westfield Century City Mall, Marina del Rey and at Palisades Village.
Amazon has said it will help affected employees find roles elsewhere in the company. Workers who opt not to stay will be offered severance packages.
According to CNBC, “Sales growth of the physical stores unit has noticeably lagged the company’s overall retail business. Physical stores, which includes Whole Foods and Fresh outlets, reported lower sales in 2021 than in 2018.
“Amazon is trimming its physical retail footprint after coming off its slowest growth rate for any quarter since 2001. Shares are down more than 8% so far this year, and the stock was the worst performer in the Big Tech group last year.”
Many may remember that Amazon started as an online bookseller in 1995 and helped bring about the demise of many independent bookstores, such as Village Books on Swarthmore.
The company said it plans to continue to focus on Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods.
One CTN reader wrote: “Looks like this will be the end of Amazon Books. Sorry to see them go … probably won’t be for a while (until the lease expires).”
The Amazon store, located at Sunset and Swarthmore, has anchored that corner of Palisades Village since September 2018.
The reader speculated the store might be gone by fall. “I enjoyed it there, and I’m guessing, given that it’s sort of the marquee space in the Village, that it will be hard to find a tenant of equal quality.”
Another reader wrote that most likely whatever lease that Amazon had with Caruso, “They’ll just pay him off to terminate the lease. Amazon has plenty of money. The real issue is how quickly he can lease the space. It’s a good corner.”
CTN called Palisades Village about Amazon Books closing, and the concierge said they “have no information about Amazon leaving.”
CTN also contacted Caruso and asked, “Has Amazon alerted Caruso that the store in Palisades Village will be closing?”
If his spokespersons respond, CTN will update the story.
Meanwhile, Amazon’s store closure will benefit that tenacious and admirable survivor, Diesel Books, in the Brentwood Country Mart, where one can browse for books or order online or by phone – or Pacific Palisades new entry, Collections Antiques and Books at 15326 Antioch Street.