HMV is set to make a return to Oxford Street after a four-year absence, with a lease signed to confirm the reopening of its flagship later this year.
363 Oxford Street was the original location for HMV’s inception in 1921. The reopened store will feature HMV’s new logo and be fitted out with the new ‘HMV shop’ concept, which centres on a fan and community-oriented offer.
CI&T, an information technology and software development company, sees the reopening as a massive opportunity for HMV.
CI&T chief growth officer EMEA Rebecca Crook comments: “HMV on Oxford Street was renowned for having exclusive in-store gigs and was the place to go for music, so it will be a welcome return to the West End. Brands are really having to work much harder to make their stores truly omni-channel. For those like HMV, there is a massive opportunity to be experiential in how they encourage footfall in-store.”
Crook highlights that the music industry in the UK has steadily been increasing year-on-year for the past eight years and vinyl records sales in the UK are now at the highest they’ve been since 1990.
“So, this is a great time for HMV to leverage its brand and knowledge of the music scene to strengthen sales.”
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HMV fell into administration at the end of 2018 and was subsequently bought by Sunrise Records in February 2019.
For 2023 onwards, Crook says that “HMV should be well placed to build and sustain customer loyalty by using the store to create a community for real music fans. It will be good to see how it connects up with other related music purchases such as gigs and festivals, and how it may experiment with immersive technology to get customers closer to their favourite artists.”
A recent PwC survey finds that consumers are attracted to in-store entertainment, immersive digital experiences and the ability to book appointments with sales advisers or personal shoppers, which HMV can utilise in its stores.