HMV gears up for digital relaunch with senior hire

HMV has drafted in former Vodafone digital music boss James Coughlan to run its soon to launch revamped digital music and film service.    

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The retailer’s owner Hilco has briefed Coughlan to develop HMV’s online offering. The first stage, the relaunch of its e-commerce platform, will launch in October.

His role is pivotal to HMV. The brand was bought out of administration by Hilco in April after seeing sales ravaged by online rivals and it is widely seen to have been slow in exploiting the opportunities presented by digital.

A UK version of ‘The Vault’, the digital streaming platform officially launched by Hilco’s sister business in Canada in April after a four-month beta phase is expected. 

Since Vodafone, where Coughlan is said by Hilco to have been responsible for growing the mobile company’s digital music business, Coughlan has worked as a consultant to Samsung, Channel 4 and Universal.

His appointment is the latest stage in the relaunch of the HMV brand under the stewardship of Hilco. It has made a number of senior marketing hires and appointed media agency the7stars to work on its media planning and buying account.

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