Market-leading U.K. entertainment retailer HMV has been piloting a reward scheme, with the aim of launching it nationwide in 2009.

The "purehmv" card will be differentiated from similar cards with mass merchants, which provide future discounts on shopping bills. Instead, the HMV scheme will provide customers with products and access to events that are unavailable in-store.

"We are currently piloting an HMV rewards scheme, which is card-based and has a working name of purehmv," said Matt Button, HMV head of customer relation management, in a statement. "The pilot has been taking place in two of our regions since late October, and, once we have obtained the customer feedback and operational information that we need, we will look to give the scheme a nationwide roll out in 2009."

He added: "Rather than simply offering discounts on future purchases, which is how the vast majority of loyalty programs work, the aim of our rewards scheme is to more fully engage with our customers by giving them the opportunity to earn and redeem points against 'money-can't-buy' items, such as signed products, back-stage passes or invitations to special events.

"We believe this would make our scheme unique and an extension of our brand mission to enable our customers to 'get closer to the music, films and games they love.'"

No date has yet been confirmed for the launch of the reward card.

"We are happy to take our time to get the scheme just right, so we have no fixed date in mind just now, but the initial response has been very encouraging, and we would hope to launch it as soon as possible next year," added Button.

A previous store card was launched in August 2003, providing £1 ($1.44) of credit for every £100 ($144.50) spent at HMV, but it is now being phased out.