Google has been prowling Manhattan’s Soho neighborhood in search of a location for its first stand-alone retail outlet, according to a local real estate broker.
The search-engine company, which has expanded its reach into smartphones, computerized eyewear and laptops, is considering leasing at 131 Greene St., said Faith Hope Consolo, chairman of the retail group at Douglas Elliman Real Estate. The property is around the corner from Apple Inc.’s first New York store, on Prince St. Google may be looking at other locations as well, according to Consolo, who said she showed company representatives retail space elsewhere. “Google has been looking in Soho for a long time,” she said in a telephone interview. “They want to be near Apple, and they’ve been concentrating on Greene St. There are different streets that are in vogue, that have become hot, and it’s just now that Greene St. has become the street in Soho.”
Google, which has seen rivals Apple and Microsoft Corp. push into shopping malls across the country, is stepping up efforts to reach more consumers with its hardware and services.