By Yihan (Bradley) Tian
Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) announced today that it will be permanently closing all of its physical retail units all around the world. This transformation will result in a pre-tax charge of 450 million USD, or $0.05 per share, to cover asset write-offs and impairments. Microsoft has confirmed that this transaction will be displayed in its Q2 earnings report.
Microsoft is planning to transform its operational platforms online to provide more comprehensive, frictionless customer service. According to David Porter, Vice President of Microsoft Corp., "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." Microsoft’s physical storefronts have been closed since the beginning of the COVID lockdown; during this period, a considerable portion of its employees have shifted towards remote work, and the company began to employ greater focus on its online sales platforms and virtual workshops.
“Retail team members will continue to serve customers from Microsoft corporate facilities and remotely providing sales, training, and support,” Porter stated in Microsoft’s latest blog release. Currently, Microsoft has stated that all employees will have the opportunity to continue their work online.
Sources: CNBC, Financial Times, Seattle Times
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