Digital retailer iTunes is the exclusive seller of Beyonce’s new fast-selling self-titled surprise album through at least Dec. 18, when some brick-and-mortar retailers in the U.S. could begin to receive copies of the album.

Target has announced it will not be one of them.

“At Target we focus on offering our guests a wide assortment of physical CDs, and when a new album is available digitally before it is available physically, it impacts demand and sales projections,” Target spokesperson Erica Julkowski tells Billboard.

She continues, “While there are many aspects that contribute to our approach and we have appreciated partnering with Beyonce in the past, we are primarily focused on offering CDs that will be available in a physical format at the same time as all other formats. At this time, Target will not be carrying Beyonce’s new self-titled album ‘Beyonce.’”

Columbia Records released “Beyonce” at 12 a.m. EST on the morning of Friday, Dec. 13, exclusively via iTunes without any pre-release announcement. Most physical retailers will receive it by Friday, Dec. 20. It is understood that the album will not have any additional bonus or exclusive content, for any retailer.

Bey has previously worked with Target to give the retailer exclusive editions of her albums. Her last studio release, 2011′s “4,” had a version exclusive to Target that came with six additional tracks. She also starred in a TV commercial for the retailer, where the singer can be heard saying “I put so much into my new album, and only Target gives you all of it.”

Billboard estimates that iTunes is the largest seller of music in the U.S., with about a 41% share of the market in 2012. Walmart had 10%, while Amazon (9%) and Target (5%) were the third and fourth-largest sellers, respectively.

However, another major retailer, Walmart, will be carrying “Beyonce” — and it should be in their stores by the end of the week.

Walmart is “happy to be able to carry her album and support all physical music,” says Walmart spokesperson Sarah McKinney. (As per Walmart’s long-standing policy, they will only carry the non-explicit version of “Beyonce.”)

“Beyonce” set sales records in the iTunes Store after only three days on sale. According to iTunes and Columbia Records, Beyonce’s record label, the album sold 617,000 copies in the U.S. and 828,773 total worldwide through Sunday night (Dec. 15). That marks both the largest single week ever in both the U.S. iTunes Store, and, the fastest-selling album worldwide in the iTunes Store.

8 thoughts on “Target Refuses to Sell Beyonce’s Surprise Album

  1. That’s got to be one of the dumbest things for a retail store to do. Just because you’re in a high office doesn’t mean that you’re smart at all and this decision proves that fact.

  2. A little disappointed in Target’s stand on this, considering she gives them free publicity by shopping there and posting pics of herself shopping there. I love shopping there myself. Who cares how she released “HER” music, she is still the bomb diggity bomb dot com to me!

  3. Funny how white people get mad when black folks don’t need them. Go Bey!!! Fuck Target!!! I don’t shop there anyway. Only thing they have good to me is the popcorn.

  4. Way to go, Bey!!! Screw Target! Target should adapt or DIE!!! Targets’ stance is nothing more than a show of support for the BIG MUSIC Industry, who by the way, are known for making the LIONS share from the deals they make with these artists, not to mention their deals with the advertisement agencies, retail stores, etc. This move by Beyonce is huge and will change the music industry.

  5. Who releases a surprise album???? SMH Some of these musicians are too full of themselves. Most people have to promote their albums. I guess she thinks she’s got it like that. We will see…

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