In one swift move, Google could immediately have a bigger retail
presence than Apple with almost 5,000 US stores, a rejuvenated
workforce (at least to start with) and a somewhat lucrative
business model selling carrier Android devices and accessories.
Over the first year, Google could manage continuing losses while
training up current and new staff on Google products, redesigning
the stores to be more inviting, and switching product lines to
become more valuable. Apple and Tesla have both proven that high
tech companies can prosper in retail. Microsoft and Amazon are
both making efforts to get into retail as well.
It’s an interesting thought experiment, and the price — $50 million — is truly pocket change for a company like Google. But I don’t see how any company could go from 0 to 4,000 retail stores in the snap of a finger. Has any company new to retail ever successfully pulled off something like that?