Business News HMV Timeline Retail

HMV to open test social store

By | Published on Wednesday 15 August 2012


Entertainment retailer HMV is going to pilot a ‘social media’ café offering free wi-fi, mobile phone charging, a ‘community blackboard’, and space for live performances. It’s the latest attempt by the flagging entertainment retailer to find a business model with longevity as mainstream music, film and gaming purchasing on the high street continues to slump.

More social entertainment retail spaces have been mooted before, and have been piloted with mixed success in some quarters. Though there is potentially still mileage in this approach, even at the more mainstream end of the market, for any company that can get it right. Whether HMV is that company remains to be seen.

The social store will also have plenty of shelf space for tech gadgets which, as previously reported, is the other grand plan to save HMV’s high street operations, albeit a less convincing one that the social store project.

Confirming that a test HMV social media café was being opened in Cambridge this weekend, a spokesman for the retail firm told reporters: “As the company continues with the transformation of its retail offer in response to the changing way that people now discover and enjoy entertainment content, HMV is increasingly developing a fully-fledged multi-channel offer across its combined store, online and digital estate”.