HMV has doubled the size of its technology buying team as it expands the category to grow sales.
Head of technology Ewan Pinder, who joined HMV from Comet in March, now leads a “significantly larger team of nine”, almost double the size of the previous team.
The expansion reflects HMV’s aim to significantly grow technology sales in the face of dwindling music, DVD and games sales.
Phil Browes is category manager in the technology team. He also joined from Comet, in June.
HMV said the “main priority” for the beefed-up technology team is the “fast-forward’ roll-out of a significantly enhanced technology offer to up to 150 stores”.
The roll out, which follows a trial in six stores at in the first half of 2011, will see the trading space and current range of technology products “substantially extended” to account for as much as 25% of store space.
Wall units and display tables are being used to increase and highlight the merchandise areas.
The roll out will be promoted via windows and instore as well as through HMV’s loyalty scheme, purehmv, supported by the strap line ‘Play It, Touch It, Live It’.
HMV said it will also invest in “bursts of advertising” across all channels including TV, press, outdoor and social media at various points during the third and fourth quarters.
Pinder said: “We now have a really strong buying team in place – an excellent blend of experience and commerciality and youthful drive and enthusiasm, which will support our plans to expand HMV’s tech offer and our ambition to become the leading specialist retailer of personal technology on the high street.
“HMV’s remit has always been about giving its customers the widest-possible access to music, film and games, however they want to discover and enjoy them, so expanding our range of technology products is actually a very natural fit for us.”
HMV’s technology category sits alongside Music & Impulse, Visual and Games (Tim Ellis) within HMV’s Commercial Department, which is headed by commercial director Michael Neil, who joined from former sister company Waterstone’s last month.