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Former Apple VP joins Microsoft retail efforts

updated 12:15 pm EDT, Tue July 21, 2009

Ex-Apple VP with MS retail

A former Apple executive is now playing a crucial role in Microsoft's fledgling retail efforts, reports say. George Blankenship is presently serving as a consultant to Microsoft, though the company has declined to say what help it is seeking. While at Apple, Blankenship served as the vice president of real estate.

The executive's primary contribution, beginning in 2001, was to choose Apple Store locations based on unusual criteria. Instead of favoring technology districts, or places with lower rent, Blankenship gravitated towards areas with greater foot traffic, particularly high-rent shopping districts. The strategy was a dangerous one, dependent on a steady stream of revenue to compensate for expenses; Apple has so far succeeded at retail however, and now runs hundreds of outlets worldwide.

Microsoft may be attempting to replicate this philosophy, and it has publicly admitted that many of its stores will be located next to Apple's. Inside shops the company is taking a different approach, eschewing Apple's layout in lieu of an original one. The intent is believed to be promoting Microsoft brands, rather than accumulating sales, which are already handled by large chains of third-party vendors.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Bobfozz

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Not worried

    MS can copy the location, the building style, but they are still left with c*** products to promote which get harder and harder to use every year. They will LOSE money on their version of a genius bar because it will probably be crowded day and night... and somewhere in the discussion some one is going to say, "Why did I buy this piece of c***?"

  1. climacs

    Joined: Dec 1969


    MS genius bar

    I sure hope they try to copy that. I can see it now - 'the problem is not with Windows, it is with your computer hardware, please see (Dell)(HP)(Gateway)(the local computer geek who built your PC from components).'

    New frontiers in unhappy customers...

  1. dliup

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Not the same

    Hiring someone who does good work and put him in a incompetent company will result in low quality work.

  1. nat

    Joined: Dec 1969



    if this guy's job was to find locations and ms has admitted to basically opening next to apple stores then what exactly is he there for?
    "hey, this location is fairly close to that apple store! let's build there!"

    ms store = ms repair center.

  1. climacs

    Joined: Dec 1969


    good talent

    wasted on an incompetent company. I seem to recall MS hired some good talent for Zune... that hasn't exactly made much difference in sales or market position, has it?

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