HMV will open 12 new temporary stores across the UK this month – with games playing a ‘key role’ in their layout.
The multiple entertainment retailer is anticipating increased demand over the Christmas period – particularly from releases including Activision’s Modern Warfare 2, Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed II and EA’s FIFA 10.
The sites are still being finalised, but MCV understands that a deal has been struck to open a store at Bluewater shopping centre in Kent.
The temporary stores add to the 250 branches already established in the UK, with a further 20 operating in Ireland.
The new outlets will remain open until January 2010.
Property director at HMV & Waterstone’s Mark Bowles told MCV: “The sites are likely to be made up of a mix of locations. There will be a few where HMV is currently trading, with the units effectively acting as ‘spillover’ locations to help cater to the massive surge in gifting demand that we see at this time of year. There will also be a number of additional stores will be targeting ‘greenfield’ locations where HMV does not currently operate.
“It’s not something we’ve tried before, but with property management companies keen to make unused retail space available to major brands at relatively favourable terms during the run up to Christmas, we felt it was an opportunity that we should explore. The range will focus mainly on chart and new releases and key gifting titles rather than catalogue, and games will, of course, be a key part of this offer.”
GAME COO Terry Scicluna told MCV last week that the specialist retailer would not be setting up any temporary stores of its own this Q4.
However, the firm is currently taking on over 1,000 temporary employees to deal with demand.