Best Buy’s 11 stores in the UK are set to close by the end of 2011, with Carphone Warehouse looking to take on the majority of staff members.
The chain, which launched in 2009, opened doors in an aim to sell ‘big box’ goods while Carphone concentrated on ‘small box’ phones and tablets.
Best Buy Europe, of which Best Buy in the UK is a part, launched as a joint venture between Carphone Warehouse and Best Buy in the US. It’s now thought that some big box products such as computers and laptops will be sold through Carphone stores as part of a bigger ‘connectivity strategy.
Andrew Harrison, CEO of Best Buy Europe, said in a statement: “After conducting a thorough strategic review of our operations, we believe that our capital investment and ‘connectivity’ strategy should be prioritised within our Carphone Warehouse stores as they offer a higher and proven rate of return. The technology world has changed substantially since 2008 and we are confident we will best serve our customers by investing in a single brand and format rather than two.”
“We are very proud of our Best Buy team members. They have been exceptionally committed and have delivered fantastic customer service. Our immediate focus is on ensuring that they are offered new opportunities within Carphone Warehouse and Geek Squad, where they will help us deliver a best-in-class customer experience. “
“We have within Carphone Warehouse a proven way of meeting customers’ emerging needs around connectivity. We will now concentrate on evolving our store development and building the complementary multi-channel capabilities to fuel our continued growth.”
So along with phones and tablets, we’re expecting to be see HDTVs, PCs and games consoles sold in Carphone Warehouse stores; potentially making the retailer’s name all the more anarchronistic. If you’ve got any Best Buy vouchers lurking around, we advise that you use them pretty darn quick.