HMV gift cards will be stocked and sold by a number of other major retailers for the first time, it was announced this weekend.
The entertainment retailer, which is currently undergoing a huge transformation of its business in the wake of slowing sales and falling profits, will now sell its gift vouchers in high street stores WHSmith, Boots, Clintons and Birthdays, as well as department store group Debenhams.
Supermarkets Tesco, Morrisons and the Co-op will also join Homebase, Esso garage forecourts and a selection of online sites, such as Funky Pigeon, in selling the cards.
The £10 and £20 vouchers will enter circulation next next month, although they are not scheduled to be rolled out at Tesco, Boots and Morrisons until next year.
HMV also announced a major design revamp of its corporate gift vouchers, which will be implemented later this month.
Corporate Sales Manager at HMV Sam Playford said: “HMV gift vouchers give access to an unparalleled selection of music, film and games and loads of other cool stuff as well as the growing range of personal technology products, such as iPads and Beats headphones, that HMV now stocks.
“They’ve long proved popular with third party companies, particularly employees who appreciate their motivational and incentivising qualities.
“However, we felt they were due a bit of a design makeover, and I have to say that I am delighted with the outcome, which reflects the HMV brand in an engaging and contemporary way.”
As HMV looks to close down stores over the next few months – it announced in January that around 50 shops would be shut down over the course of 2011 – it appears to want to maintain a strong presence on the high street through deals with other retailers.
Running fewer stores and arranging partnerships with businesses in the manner of this gift card collaboration will be seen as a more cost-effective strategy during the company’s turnaround process.
Playford added: “It’s also wonderful news that our electronic gift cards, which have already proved a big hit with our own customers, will shortly become much more widely available on the high street and online thanks to other retailers deciding to stock them.”