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Best Buy in Peril: A Loss for Consumers?
"People who thought we were dead have to go through the painful process of revisiting that point of view."
Best Buy just reported its best news in some time, an increase in sales for the quarter when compared with last year. That increase, which still resulted in a narrow loss for the quarter, only exists when factoring out the 49 large-format stores that were closed in the fiscal year for 2013. Nevertheless, new CEO Hubert Joly was encouraged enough after his first full quarter as CEO to state that, "People who thought we were dead have to go through the painful process of revisiting that point of view."
As Best Buy continues to make several stores redundant (5 to 10 more will close in the 2014 fiscal year), the question left for consumers as poised by CNET, is whether or not the world is better with Best Buy alive or dead.
According to the CNET article, if Best Buy, with its imperfect sales experience, follows in the footsteps of CompUSA and Circuit City, consumers will lose the best place to encounter and compare electronics and gadgets, "I've wondered many times if my regular weekly visit to the local Best Buy would be my last. And still do.
But I like knowing the store is there.
Best Buy is really the only electronics specialty store besides Fry's Electronics (mostly a West Coast phenomenon) that packs lots of PCs, Macs, tablets, and phones into relatively small abutting areas, allowing you to easily comparison shop."
As Best Buy was clobbering competitor Circuit City ten years ago, HD televisions were integral to the experience. If Best Buy fades away, great swathes of the US will be without a place to compare displays, at least with the naked eye.
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