The future for Harry Potter

The Financial Times reports that retailers are offering heavy discounts on Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Barnes and Noble CEO Steve Riggio says that he is doing so as “a good investment in the future.”

But what future? This is the final book – if there isn’t profit by now, when will there be? Is there another book coming despite indications contrary?
See my post on “Losing Gracefully in Business” to understand why sometimes there is no future.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows

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2 responses to “The future for Harry Potter

  1. Hm. Maybe the “investment in the future” is discounting the final book in hopes of increasing demand for Harry Potter merchandise. Barnes and Noble sells Harry Potter DVDs, right? And they’ll probably come out with collectors’ edition books and gift sets and calendars and stuff like that.

    Just a thought.

  2. Agreed – I’ve oversimplified a bit.

    What you’re describing is “bundling” – except in this case the book and the merchandise aren’t sold together. Bundling only makes sense when purchases can be correlated, and in this case purchasing the book from B&N now probably doesn’t correlate with purchasing the DVD from B&N a year from now. (Maybe Amazon.com will have a discount on the DVD!) If you argued that by discounting the book, the higher traffic will drive volume to the in-store coffee shops, then I might be persuaded of that.

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