Merrill Lynch: Best Buy may sell Mac mini at select stores

in Current Mac Hardware edited January 2014
Best Buy may begin selling Macs again, which in turn could accelerate the iPod halo affect, according to a report released by Merrill Lynch.

In a research note sent to clients this week, Merrill Lynch analyst Steve Milunovich said his firm believes Best Buy may begin to sell Mac minis in at least some of its stores. The analyst based his report on information elicited from a retail manager at a Best Buy store, who said he expects to have Apple computers in the store by the end of February.

Milunovich also says Best Buy?s website at one time indicated that the Mac mini was ?coming soon? to its retail stores, though AppleInsider was not able to confirm this bit of information, and neither Apple or Best Buy would comment on the subject.

And while the two companies had previously decided not move forward following a pilot program in 48 different US stores, the firm claims Mac mini's lower $500 price point would make the program more successful a second time around.

"Half the 48 stores had Apple-badged employees, which we think resulted in higher sales and made clear that Apple-savvy sales people would be a requirement. We venture that the additional cost of dedicated sales people combined with Apple's lower volume of $1,300+ computers made a deal unworkable at that time."

In the report, Merrill Lynch cites the introduction of the Mac mini as the catalyst that could spawn a renewed partnership between Best Buy and Apple. "The new Mac Mini has moved the price point down to $499. We believe a limited roll out to select Best Buy stores is logical," the firm said. "Because showing how the Mac Mini connects to peripherals is so important, either Apple-badged or knowledgeable Best Buy reps must be involved."

A partnership between Apple and Best Buy on Mac mini sales could further accelerate the halo effect of the iPod by providing yet another outlet for Apple to reach out to the larger consumer market, Milunovich said.

Merrill Lynch reiterated a "Buy" rating on Apple with a price target of $85 per share.


  • Reply 1 of 8
    auroraaurora Posts: 1,142member
    Just in the Best Buy the otherday. Not any Mac software. Apple needs a few store chains to carry pods,mini's, software and some otherstuff. Apple's retail presence sucks. This one year i sell some Mac stuff the next i dont doesnt cut it Best Buy/Apple. I suggest Hooking up with some major store chains and try to get at least a display or end shelf with some Mac products. Not 1 Apple store in the State of S.Carolina. Apple doesnt know how to display its products. (edit)Anyone remember the days of walking into Walmart and seeing Performa's and Mac stuff? Saw my First iMac G3 at Sears. Thats when Apple had more marketshare because you could actually walk into a store and see and buy product. Steve you listening?
  • Reply 2 of 8
    websnapwebsnap Posts: 224member
    Nothing new. In canada, Best Buy Carries the whole mac line and some software. Not much software, but better than the last few years. has them for pre-order. Check it out.
  • Reply 3 of 8
    erbiumerbium Posts: 354member

    Originally posted by websnap

    Nothing new. In canada, Best Buy Carries the whole mac line and some software. Not much software, but better than the last few years. has them for pre-order. Check it out.

    Yeah truth.

    I was going to say, we've had Mac's at Best Buy for some time now in Canada. They carry most models, however I was unable to buy an Apple peripherals, aside from the iSight. Was looking for the bluetooth keyboard.
  • Reply 4 of 8
    amorphamorph Posts: 7,112member
    Lucky Canucks.

    Best Buy in the US has a terrible history selling Macs.
  • Reply 5 of 8
    websnapwebsnap Posts: 224member
    yeah, but at least you have a better chance to be near an Apple Retail Store. We have to deal with our crappy minor retailers. Forget about any in-store promotions worth standing in line for.
  • Reply 6 of 8
    applenutapplenut Posts: 5,768member

    Originally posted by Amorph

    Lucky Canucks.

    Best Buy in the US has a terrible history selling Macs.

    the problem is best buy has wannabe geeks as employees. true geeks go to good schools and do something with their geekdom. best buy geeks pretend to know more than they do and that means laughing at macs and not recommending them. they know next to nothing about what they are talking about but when a customer asks about a mac all of a sudden they become experts on how the mac sucks. there probably isn't much difference in commissions, or anything, yet they go out of their way to disuade the mac purchase simply to make it seem like they are knowledgable.
  • Reply 7 of 8
    The reason American Best Buy's stopped carrying Mac's is because of an issue they had ith the iMac G3's. Apple required them to buy them in sets of 5, one of each color. However if for instance blue is selling really well and green is selling terribly, Best Buy now has a bunch of green ones they can't sell. Some very select Best Buys in the US carry them, but hopefully they will make a come back.
  • Reply 8 of 8
    If you jumped two-three years back with the Wayback Machine, you'd see that there was not a single company (Merrill Lynch included) that thought Apple would ever get this far or be in this place in a market they defined.

    How do you like the taste of crow, boys?

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