Report: Microsoft Plotting Fifth Avenue Location near Apple Flagship Store

Aug 07, 2014 06:20 PM EDT | Jordan Ecarma

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Microsoft is reportedly eyeing property on New York City's Fifth Avenue to open its first store in the city--a location that will put it close to the flagship store of rival Apple.

The tech giant is currently in negotiations for an 8,700-square-foot, two-story spot at 677 Fifth Ave., sources told the New York Daily News. The fashion brand Fendi last used the building but switched to a Madison Avenue location last year.

"For Microsoft to land on Fifth Avenue just a few blocks from Apple would certainly be interesting," said Faith Hope Consolo, a top retail broker with Douglas Elliman, who is not involved in the deal, told the Daily News. "It would be very dramatic."

According to Consolo, ground floor store rent on Fifth Avenue can be more than $3,500 per square foot, making it some of the most expensive space in the country.

Microsoft last considered a New York retail spot in 2012, temporarily showcasing wares in a Times Square pop-up store for the holiday shopping season.

The Redmond, Wash.-based company has nearly 60 retail locations in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico, while 13 more stores are "coming soon," CNET reported.

In response to a request for comment, a Microsoft spokesperson told CNET, "We are always working to identify the best possible locations for our Microsoft retail stores to deliver the choice value and service our customers are looking for, but do not have any additional information to share at this time."

CNET noted that Microsoft tends to place its stores near Apple retail locations in an effort to lure customers on their way to look at Apple products. One difference between the two is that Apple mostly sells its own products at Apple stores, while Microsoft sells third-party products that support Windows and Microsoft software.

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