Bookstore-Slayer Amazon Plans 400 ... Bookstores?

It could become country's second-biggest chain
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 3, 2016 2:03 AM CST
Amazon 'Plans to Open 400 Bookstores'
Customers shop at Amazon Books in Seattle.   (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Amazon is reportedly planning to become one of those things that thrived before the rise of Amazon: a chain of bookstores. Sandeep Mathrani, CEO of mall company General Growth Properties, spilled the beans on Tuesday when the Wall Street Journal asked him about developments in the mall business. "You've got Amazon opening brick-and-mortar bookstores and their goal is to open, as I understand, 300 to 400," said Mathrani, noting that online retailers in areas including fashion and makeup are also opening stores in malls—and that having physical stores would allow Amazon shoppers to drop off returns.

The move would make Amazon the second-biggest bookstore chain in America, second only to Barnes & Noble, which has 640 bookstores, reports USA Today. Amazon—which opened its first brick-and-mortar store in Seattle in November—says it doesn't comment on "rumors and speculation." Investors appear to believe that opening a bookstore chain would hurt both Amazon and its rivals: The Journal reports that Amazon and Barnes & Noble shares both fell in after-hours trading. (Here's how Amazon honored its first customer 21 years ago.)

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