Amazon is poised to expand its one Seattle bookstore into a chain of such stores. Or is it?
The rumor mill went into overdrive earlier this week when Sandeep Mathrani, chief executive of the mall properties company General Growth Properties, said on a conference call that Amazon was planning to open 300 to 400 physical bookstores. After his comments went viral — many people are eager to believe that Amazon is stretching its tentacles into all sorts of areas — Mr. Mathrani’s company issued a one-sentence statement late Wednesday afternoon to amend what he had said, noting his remarks were “not intended to represent Amazon’s plans.”
The backtracking immediately became the butt of jokes on social media, with numerous quips circulating on Twitter about the trustworthiness of mall company C.E.O.s. “I can’t believe a mall C.E.O. lied to us,” went one tweet. “What next, we find out they don’t have the real Santa?”
So what’s the truth of the matter?
While the scale of Amazon’s store expansion plans may not be as broad as Mr. Mathrani described, the Internet retailer is planning at least some modest growth in its number of bookstores, wrote Nick Wingfield. And according to Recode, that may just be the beginning of potential plans for other types of stores, too.
Amazon has not commented on any store plans. And if its unveiling of the Seattle bookstore last year is any guide to future behavior — the company said nothing about the retail space until the store was essentially open for business — the odds of Amazon disclosing its plans are slim.