Amazon has closed eight more Amazon Go stores in its latest cost-cutting exercise

What happened? Amazon has permanently closed eight of its cashless Amazon Go stores as the tech giant continues to tighten its belt. Four of the affected stores are located in San Francisco, two in New York City, and two in Seattle. They will continue to operate until April 1.

When the first Amazon Go store opened in Seattle in 2018 after a long delay, its Just Walk Out technology that allows shoppers to pick items from the shelves and leave was hailed as the future of shopping: no line, checkouts, or registers, with the bill automatically charged to a person’s Amazon account when they leave. Since then, more than 40 stores have appeared in five different states and even reached London, where they are branded Amazon Fresh.

But not all stores are successful. In a statement about the eight closings, Amazon said, “Like any physical retailer, we periodically review our portfolio of stores and make optimization decisions along the way.”

Amazon added that it remains committed to the Amazon Go format and continues to learn which locations and features suit the most customers as it continues to develop outlets. It will also continue to open new stores – Geekwire reports that a new store just opened in south Seattle.

The announcement comes nearly a year to the day since Amazon said it would close all physical Amazon Books stores in the US and UK, as well as Amazon 4-star and remaining Amazon Pop-Up stores . In total, nearly 70 stores were closed as it shifted focus to Amazon Fresh, Go, Whole Foods, and its cashierless tech.

Amazon is one of several tech giants cutting staff and halting projects now that the pandemic boom has ended and the global economy has weakened. It announced a record 18,000 job cuts in January, closing and abandoning plans for several U.S. warehouses, and halting construction of its second headquarters in Virginia, where it had sought hiring 25,000 workers by 2030.

Elsewhere, Amazon closed one of its two Fresh Pickup locations in Seattle in January, and one of its Amazon Fresh stores in London closed after 18 months of operation. There’s also a report from The Information revealing that at least seven newly built Amazon Fresh locations in the US are sitting empty as “zombie” stores.

Amazon said it is working with employees affected by the closings to find new roles within the company, including at other nearby Go stores or at Amazon Operations sites.

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