The first European Microsoft Store will open today in London, the United Kingdom. Chief Marketing Officer Chris Capossela says the 2,000 square meter (22,000 square feet) store on Oxford Circus in central London (Bing Maps) with 150 staff has been designed for everybody, from gaming fans and students to small business users. The store will include a gaming lounge, an augmented reality experience and an area for business technology.
According to Microsoft UK CEO Cindy Rose, the London store marks Microsoft’s continued commitment to the UK market, although company has had some concerns:
We have concerns about Brexit, which we have discussed with government, mostly around bringing in talent to the country from wherever it exists and about making sure data can continue to flow frictionlessly, which is important to the cloud We think whatever the political landscape brings, we are confident the UK will continue to thrive and prosper.
According to Rose, Microsoft is not planning further stores In Europe at the moment.
To mark the launch of the new store, Microsoft is donating £1 million to three UK charities, and will run digital skills workshops in the store for schoolchildren and students in a dedicated community space. Charities to receive donations include UK Youth, the Raspberry Pi Foundation and the London Community Foundation.
CEO Cindy Rose:
We do feel that there’s a digital skills shortage in the UK and we’ve made public commitments around AI apprenticeships and technology apprenticeships exposing children to coding. We’d like to expose around 3 million kids to coding by next year.
If you are in or close to London, check the store’s extensive event and workshop schedule: Microsoft Store London
Author: Kari Finn
A former Windows Insider MVP, Kari started in computing in the mid 80’s writing code for VAX / VMS systems. Since then, he’s worked in a variety of IT positions. He specializes in Windows image capture, customization, repair and deployment as well as Hyper-V virtualization. Kari is a proud Team Member at number #1 Windows site TenForums.com.