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By Carl Howe

Red Herring put out some great data from Sanford Bernstein Research last week showing that Apple's (AAPL) stores are posting more than $4,032 in annual revenue per square foot of space.

That's more than six times the revenue per square foot at Neiman Marcus, four times that of Best Buy (BBY), and about one and a half times that at Tiffany's (TIF).

click to enlarge
apple retail large
Graph of Apple retail sales through mid-2005 (Source: Apple Computer financial presentation)

The article then proceeds to compare Apple's retail store strategy with that of Gateway's (GTW), which is a little bit like comparing the Four Seasons hotel chain's strategy with Holiday Inn's: they address different target markets and get different results. But given that I spent almost a year defending Apple's retail strategy when the company opened its first stores against a crowd of analysts claiming it was stupid, it's nice to have vindication through data, even if it is five years later.

Source: Apple Stores Now More Profitable Than Tiffany's Per Square Foot