HMV Japan announced on its website that it would reopen a store in Tokyo’s central shopping and nightlife district of Shibuya. The CD retailing giant had its flagship Japanese outlet in Shibuya for 20 years before closing the 6,450-square foot shop in August 2010.
With slumping CD sales, HMV Japan had a tumultuous year in 2010. In March the Tokyo-based retailing giant Culture Convenience Club, which runs the leading Japanese video and music retail/rental chain Tsutaya, had announced that it would buy the CD retailer but the deal fell through over price.
Finally in December, the convenience store chain Lawson bought HMV Japan for 1.8 bil. yen ($21.6 mil.). HMV Japan was formerly a wholly owned subsidiary of the Daiwa Securities SMBC Principal Investments (DPI) group.
HMV Japan was started by Britain’s HMV chain in 1990 and sold to Daiwa Securities in 2007 (Billboard.biz, Nov. 16, 2007) for 17 bil. yen (then $153 mil).
The location of HMV’s previous 4-floor Shibuya store has been jumped on American clothes retailer Forever 21 and the locale of the CD retailer’s new outlet has yet to be determined. HMV said the new Shibuya store will be smaller than the previous one but will also have an event space.
HMV Japan has 37 outlets throughout Japan (down from a peak of 67 in 2008) and reportedly half of its total 2009 sales of approximately 30 bil. yen ($359 mil.) came from online sales of physical merchandise.