Thanks in part to a tipster, we’ve become aware of a growing situation in Brazil concerning the shuttering of Microsoft-branded stores. Ironically, we reported in early 2015 that Microsoft seemed to be planning to launch a flagship retail store in Sao Paulo, Brazil based on leaked images stemming from a Microsoft Lumia Brazil account. Technically speaking, the proposed store would have been a rebranding on an already existing Nokia Store located in the Eldorado Mall in Sao Paulo.
While news of the rebranded retail store has since simmered from its initial bubbling’s in 2015, it now looks as though Microsoft may be instead capping its retail presence in the area. According to a report from WindowsMania.com.br, Microsoft may be closing several of its branded stores in Brazil with no clear indication as to why.
Despite Brazil being a relatively Windows- and Windows Phone-friendly region, it appears that Microsoft is set on shuttering the number of places customers can attend to purchase its wares. Again, there has yet to discuss publically the closures or address a possible alternate strategy that could include a reorganized and centralized marketing and retail presence in Brazil.
Without an actual announcement from Microsoft addressing WindowsMania.com.br claims, we’ll mark this down as anecdotal observations bordering on rumors. However, if Microsoft’s retail departure retreat is confirmed, it’ll be a head scratcher for sure.
Update, apparently Microsoft issued a statement to another Brazilian site, stating the following:
Microsoft, together with its franchisees in a strategic decision for the channel confirms the closing set of certain physical stores of the brand Microsoft Store - Authorized Reseller in Brazil. The company makes clear, however, that the service's online store brand continues to operate normally and serving the entire national territory.
Thanks, Afonso, for the tip!