Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Gennaro Castaldo Watch: U2 have released a record

Excitement from Gennaro Castaldo, as HMV plans to keep stores open past midnight on the first sale day of U2's album.

Presumably that's to stop customers going elsewhere to... other... record shops. Or maybe they're going to sell it at midnight so that the elderly U2 audience can buy their records in peace as the new HMV customer base will be tucked up in bed.

Gennaro, though, sees this as some sort of historic moment:

HMV spokesman Gennaro Castaldo said: "We have had an incredible amount of interest in the new album with a considerable number of pre-orders secured recently."

Fans will be able to pick up the first copies of the recording in HMV shops in Dublin's Grafton Street and Galway as soon as they open at midnight tomorrow (Thursday), he said.

"We advise fans to come down early to be in with a chance to receive a U2 goody bag," he added.

So... getting the album early isn't really enough of a draw, you still have to bribe people with a free gift to actually persuade them to turn up, then?

Meanwhile, Gennaro has been casting an eye over his new, expanded kingdom as Zavvi sells up:
Gennaro Castaldo, chief press officer at HMV, said he was confident two HMV stores in the same stretch of road would "complement" each other well.

And he assured us there are no plans to close the original HMV.

He said: "The Croydon HMV is one of our largest but we still feel there is enough demand for a second store of roughly the same proportions.

"We will not be closing the current HMV store. Even though both stores will carry the same branding and the same name, they will have their own character."

He added: "We are very excited about our new acquisition.

"Croydon is a good site for us. It is a major centre with sufficient demand to open a second store."

How does that work, then? You've got a brand, and yet you can have two stores with the same brand but different characters?