On Monday Amazon announced that it is going to open its seventeenth unstore later this year at the University of Illinois, Chicago.
Dubbed [email protected], this 2,300 square-foot operation will be location in the Student Center East building on the UIC campus (Google Maps). It will be staffed by Amazon employees who can help students and faculties pickup packages, return them, and solve CS issues.
“We couldn’t be more excited to bring Amazon to campus and continue to elevate the services we provide our community,” J. Rex Tolliver, Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at UIC, said in an Amazon news release. “Tens of thousands of students, faculty, staff, and visitors come through Student Center East each day. [email protected] will be a big part of our reimagination of the student experience on campus, and a great partner for years to come.”
Amazon hasn't released any images of the new location, although it should look a lot like the similar locations at Purdue and at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.
The terms for Amazon's agreement with the University of Illinois at Chicago have not been released, but Amazon's contract with the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign tells us that Amazon is paying the university a 1.5% commission on purchases by customers buying with a student Prime Membership, on items bought through a co-branded Amazon site aimed at University of Illinois students which are then shipped to a campus-area address.
UIUC also gets a half a percent commission on similar orders placed through that co-branded Amazon site and shipped outside the campus area, and Amazon has also promised UIUC a minimum payment of a quarter of a million dollars a year.
So basically the universities are getting an affiliate's commission based on students shopping at Amazon. Some have found that offer so appealing that they have even replaced their college bookstore with an Amazon unstore, while others are keeping both.
The University of Pennsylvania, for example, has a college bookstore run by B&N Education as well as an Amazon unstore.