Microsoft says it will permanently shut down its retail locations

Written by: Wajeeh Khan
June 26, 2020
  • Microsoft says it will permanently shut down its retail locations.
  • The tech giant expressed plans of shifting its focus to the online store.
  • The U.S. company expects £364.41 million of a pre-tax charge in Q4.

In an announcement on Friday, Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) said it has decided in favour of permanently shutting down its retail locations. The U.S. tech giant expressed plans of shifting its focus to the online store ( that will now serve the customers as a hub for support, training, sales, and more.  

Microsoft remained confident that its entire workforce will continue to work with the company. Instead of in-store responsibility, however, its retail staff will now be trained for roles to serve on the website. Microsoft said last month that it will invest £800 million to build a data centre in Poland.

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Shares of the company are currently more than 1.5% down on Friday. At £158.87 per share, Microsoft is more than 20% down year to date in the stock market after recovering from a low of £110 per share in late March. Learn more about stocks and the stock market.

Corporate Vice President David Porter’s remarks on Friday

According to David Porter, the current Corporate Vice President of Microsoft:

“Our sales have grown online as our product portfolio has evolved to largely digital offerings, and our talented team has proven success serving customers beyond any physical location. We are grateful to our Microsoft Store customers and we look forward to continuing to serve them online and with our retail sales team at Microsoft corporate locations.”

In the past decade, Microsoft remained committed to expanding its presence in the retail market. The company aimed at mimicking the shopping experience that Apple offers to its customers. Its retail stores invited potential customers to try new hardware and software products by Microsoft and its partners. Microsoft’s iconic 5th avenue store in the New York City that it launched in 2015 is only blocks away from the flagship glass cube store of Apple Inc.  

Microsoft expects £364.41 million of a pre-tax charge in Q4

The ongoing Coronavirus pandemic pushed Microsoft into temporarily closing its retail locations in March. The American multinational technology company expects an about £364.41 million of a pre-tax charge ascribed to the shut down of its physical stores. As per the company:

“Microsoft will continue to invest in its digital storefronts on, and stores in Xbox and Windows, reaching more than 1.2 billion people every month in 190 markets. The company will also reimagine spaces that serve all customers, including operating Microsoft Experience Centres in London, NYC, Sydney, and Redmond campus locations.”

Earlier in June, Microsoft declared a quarterly dividend of 41 pence per share. At the time of writing, the U.S. tech giant is valued at £1.21 trillion and has a price to earnings ratio of 32.69.