HMV Canada’s New Prices Are Insaaaaaane

Aug 27th, 2007 // 9 Comments

bobanddough.jpgGood news Canadian Idolator readers: Those Allman Brothers and U2 CD’s just got a little cheaper. Much like NYC smokers who travel to Delaware just to save that buck, HMV of Canada might start drawing those further north to cross the border, having just announced that it will be slashing prices like Crazy Eddie on all of its catalog items. Could the up-to-and-including 33% cuts be a response to the longstanding idea that lowering the prices on CD’s that major labels have been making millions off of for decades now might be a good idea? Just maybe:

The price cuts come at a time when music sales in Canada have slumped dramatically. According to the Canadian Recording Industry Association, the net value of wholesale physical music sales fell 35% in the first quarter of 2007 to $68.7 million, from $105.6 million a year earlier. Unit sales of CDs and music DVDs fell 30% during the quarter to 7.1 million. These figures have had many in the industry – both in retail and Canadian recording companies – concerned, especially since CD sales in the country had already declined by 7% in 2006.

Even the labels are grudgingly getting behind HMV on this one in a “jeez, if you hafta” kinda way. Still, the chain says that if the plan is a flop, they may indeed have to shrink the stores rather than continue larding them with major label product from before 1990. But think of it, y’all: a possible future where a copy of Revolver or Tusk doesn’t cost close to $20 bucks. If only our own $18.99 overlords could take a lesson here.

HMV Canada Drops Prices [Billboard]

  1. Thierry

    HMV have been reducing prices in other ways for some time: most significant releases of the past 2-3 years are usually pretty quickly available in a 2-for-$25 deal, and they’ve recently started offering a very tempting “Deal of the Week” (over the past month, this has included the most recent albums by Rufus Wainwright, Ryan Adams and Spoon for $7.99 each).

  2. ascot-revival

    Every purchase from Avril Lavigne’s back-catalog comes with a complimentary Sum 41 album.

  3. The Mozfather

    As many of the CDs I am looking for are never readily available at most HMVs, this means poo to me.

  4. Lax Danja House

    Yet HMV Ireland refuses to sell a new CD below €16.99 :|

    I wonder if they’ll wait until this starts working and profits increase before they pull the plug. You know how the folks in the music business hate to see things like capitalism working out too well.

  5. DavidWatts

    Some advice from the US:

    Reduced demand means reduced price? What are you, on crack? Just keep the price the same and they’ll come around. Or “enhance the value” by giving your customers boring videos or useless ringtones or something else that provides no incentive at all and then RAISE the price. It’s basic economics.

  6. Heretix

    The only reason that CRIA sales are down 35% is because 7 (yes, SEVEN) labels have left their organization in the past year. Of course sales go down when you have less product to sell. This is the kind of industry posturing that shows not only are they mindbendingly stupid bullies, but outright liars as well.

  7. i_am_scifi

    HMV has to keep up with the online distributors somehow, and I guess this could work. I’m not so certain HMV’s in the US will follow suit unless the Canadian job is a major success, so I hope those North of the border go running to their nearest HMV to buy it all up so we can get some cheap stuff too.

  8. mackro

    Also, HMV is lowering prices because the weak US dollar, which is now equivalent to the Canadian dollar, has made CD shopping in Canada pointless. Why pay $22CAN+14%tax-or-so for something you can get for $10US+7%tax-or-so? The price reductions are to reduce the mire of deep shit, essentially.

  9. cerulgalactus

    Tell that to HMV Australia, who seem to not only not know what the words “reduced price” mean, but tend to have a perverse pleasure in selling a lot of things (DVDs mostly) above the RRP.

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