By Anu Passary | Oct 22, 2012 12:23 PM EDT
On Saturday, Oct. 20, the most valuable company in the world, Apple, opened its third retail store in Beijing, China. The store is the company's largest in Asia and is located in the Wangfujing commercial shopping district.
Wangfujing is one of Beijing's most famous shopping streets and is walking distance from the Forbidden City. The area is a popular haunt for tourists. Apple declined to divulge the new store's size, but mentioned it employs 300 workers. Additionally, reports indicate that the store is "one of only three in the world with a three-storey staircase."
"Notable aspects of the store include its three-level glass staircase, which Apple says is one of only three in the world, and its dual 360-degree Genius Bar counters," reported The Next Web.
The store opened amidst much fanfare with hundreds of people lining up as early as Friday evening for the next-day 9am opening, and the chance to get their hands on special T-shirts commemorating the new Apple store.
According to a WSJ report "A pair of high school students, Wang Xueang and Chang Dawei, were first in line at 8:30 p.m. Friday night, bringing snacks in tow. They wanted to be among the first to see the store, they said, because they admired the 'unique' brand."
The excitement surrounding the Apple store opening is indicative of the fact that the company continues to command a strong presence in China, despite rising competition from other local and global brands.
Currently, Apple has 390 retail stores globally and the company has been increasing its efforts to expand its presence in the Chinese market. John Browett, Apple SVP of retail had earlier averred that with an area of 2,300 square meters and more than 300 employees, the new store is Apple's largest store in Asia. The store will retail a full range of accessories for Apple products.
Presently, Apple has six stores in mainland China, which include three in Shanghai. The company plans to open a seventh store in Shenzen. Apple mentioned that its stores in China gets four times the traffic vis-à-vis their U.S. stores.
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