SAN FRANCISCO Feb 14 Amazon.com Inc
unit Quidsi may open more physical stores because sales
sometimes benefit from hands-on interaction by customers,
according to Vinit Bharara, co-founder and chief operating
officer of Quidsi.
Quidsi is launching a new online home goods business called
Casa.com this week that will carry more than 35,000 products
including bedding, towels, storage, dinnerware, and cookware.
That adds to existing Quidsi websites such as Diapers.com,
Soap.com, BeautyBar.com, Wag.com and YoYo.com.
Amazon has succeeded partly by avoiding the cost of
operating brick and mortar stores and Quidsi is almost
However, Quidsi's BeautyBar cosmetics business opened a
physical store last year at a shopping mall in Manhasset, New
York. Bharara said the company also ran a baby products store
when it used to be based in Montclair, New Jersey.
"Where we think customers want more of an experience of
touching and feeling the product, like in beauty, it might make
sense," Bharara told Reuters in an interview. "It might make
sense in some of these other websites that we launch in the
Recent Quidsi job postings online suggest the company is
planning a sporting goods business. Bharara declined to comment
on plans for future category expansion.
Quidsi's BeautyBar store in Manhasset had a strong holiday
season, Bharara said, while declining to disclose financial
"We're excited by the results so far," he added. "These
things, if you do it right, and generate the right customer
demand they're not done as loss leaders or anything like that.
The financials make sense."
Many of the home goods that Casa.com will feature mimic
items on Amazon's main site. For Bharara, who himself sometimes
shops on Amazon.com and sometimes visits more specialized sites,
that is not a concern.
"Different people shop in different ways," he said. "There
are occasions when folks are going to want a more specialized
Shoppers can add items from the various Quidsi sites into
one shopping cart. Buying from more than one site at a time
lowers the minimum order for free shipping to $39 from $49. At
Amazon, most orders qualify for free shipping with a $25