HMV can announce that it is following up its recent expansion into personal technology by opening a new-style store dedicated almost exclusively to this fast-growing product category.
The hmv techshop opens today in the prestigious One New Change shopping development in the City of London – the capital's chic-est destination for fashion, dining and culture -just in time for the all-important run-up to Christmas.
Trading just under 1,200 sq.ft.on the site previously occupied by Foyles bookstores, the store will stock a range of premium technology brands. These include Apple iPads and iPods; tablets, netbooks and mp3 devices from the likes of Acer and Samsung; and, in particular, a wide selection of headphones including the latest models by Beats by Dr Dre, Bose, MARLEY, Sennheiser and Skullcandy, which will be presented on bespoke 'headphones tables' for ease of customer sampling. Alongside a number of speakerdocks and various
tech accessories, the store will also carry a small selection of chart CDs, DVD/Blu-ray and games titles to cater to Christmas gift shoppers.
The unit at One New Change, which is leased from landlords Land Securities on a short-term let running into 2012 with the option to extend, represents an opportunity for HMV to trial a stand-alone technology offer, which, if successful, may be repeated more extensively under the hmv techshop banner, including in at least one further London location prior to Christmas.
HMV has recently accelerated its move into the burgeoning personal technology market as the number of people consuming entertainment content via digital formats continues to grow. With its rich heritage in music, film and games, and 250 highly accessible high street stores around the country, HMV is well placed to cater to this increasing demand, offering consumers the opportunity to Play It, Touch It, Live It – by sampling and purchasing next-generation technology products in its wi-fi enabled merchandising sections that are staffed by enthusiastic and knowledgeable tech advisers.
Fuelled by a combination of fashion-conscious younger consumers and older 'baby-boomer' customers who value listening to music in studio-quality sound, and dubbed 'affordable luxuries' by some commentators, headphones are helping to lead the surge in demand for personal technology products. Around 10m units are expected to be sold in the UK by the end of 2011 – equivalent to a market value of more than £150m.
HMV stores nationwide, including the new hmv techshop at One New Change, have just taken delivery of Beats by Dr Dre's latest and most fashionable new range to date – its stylishly block-coloured Studio HD headphones, which come in Blue, Purple, Orange, Red and, the coolest of all, Acid Green – which are exclusive to HMV.
Ewan Pinder, hmv Head of Technology, comments: “HMV's remit has always been to give its customers the widest-possible access to music, film and games, however they want to discover and enjoy them. So our move into personal technology products, including through this new-style store, is actually a very natural next step for us that supports our continuing transformation into a broad-based entertainment brand. Headphones, in particular, are really taking off in a big way, and are set to be among the 'must-have' gift items this Christmas.”
David Atcherley-Symes, Retail Leasing Director, Land Securities says: “One New Change is playing a leading role in transforming the City of London into a desirable seven day shopping and eating destination for Londoners and visitors to the Capital. We are thrilled to be selected as the destination for exciting new innovation in shopping. The hmv techshop follows Ocado's virtual 'pop-up' store and Amazon's collection lockers, offering shoppers in the Square Mile a unique experience.”
Head of Press & PR (HMV & Fopp)
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