Apple today closed two of its Direct Apple Store retail outlets in China following the outbreak of the coronavirus in China. Stores in Nanjing and Fuzhou, China, have been temporarily closed, Bloomberg reported. In a earnings call yesterday, Apple CHIEF Executive Tim Cook confirmed that the total number of closures had risen to three, plus one store in Qingdao, China, had been closed, while direct stores in many other provinces and cities would also limit business hours.
Apple plans to reopen the Apple Stores in Nanjing and Fuzhou on February 3, while the Qingdao store will reopen on February 4.
Apple will limit its ability to send employees to China to “key businesses” and is providing care packages for Apple employees in Wuhan and across China.
Although the virus has spread to other countries, it is mainly distributed in China, with more than 6,000 cases of coronavirus so far. Some of Apple’s supplier splants in China will be closed until February 10 due to the Lunar New Year and the impact of the outbreak, and Apple has previously said it is working to avoid an impact on production.
Cook said the company is continuing to focus on virus-related data, and sales are likely to slow as more shoppers are reluctant to go out. Apple has set its guidance for the next quarter at between $63 billion and $67 billion, which is larger than normal and reflects the outbreak of the coronavirus and the “uncertainty” surrounding it.