// Amazon signs leases in LA to begin opening a new concept of grocery stores in the area
// The first stores will launch by the end of the year and they are expected to be different to the current Amazon Go convenience format
// The tech giant is planning to book at least 35,000sq ft of space for the stores
Amazon has signed over a dozen leases in Los Angeles to begin opening grocery stores in the area that are expected to differ from its current Amazon Go convenience chain.
The first couple of stores will launch by the end of this year and will likely be located in Woodland Hills and Studio City, the Wall Street Journal reported.
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The tech giant is planning to book at least 35,000sq ft of space for the stores.
Contractors hired by Amazon were recently granted permits to change the exterior of a Woodland Hills property, start electrical work on light fixtures and fire sprinklers, and install an espresso machine, as well as kitchen equipment.
The new stores will be separate from its Whole Foods brand, which it acquired in 2017, and the Amazon Go convenience chain.
It is also unclear whether the new stores will be branded as Amazon markets.
Amazon Go was launched to offer customers a shopping experience where they could find ready-to-eat foods or groceries with cashier-less technology.
It has also rolled out physical Amazon Books stores and a string Amazon 4-star stores.
Although there is currently no detail on whether this concept will launch in the UK, there is some speculation that it will open debut its Amazon Go chain in London amid reports the tech giant’s UK office is scouting for sites.
Last week it was revealed that Amazon had hired Sainsbury’s former commercial operations director Matt Birch to help bolster its property team.
Birch is reportedly among the Amazon executives who have been meeting to identify sites for new physical stores in the UK.