Target must not know 'bout her. After the surprise iTunes release of Beyonce's fifth, self-titled "visual album" at midnight on Friday, Dec. 13, Target, who has collaborated with the Grammy winner in the past, is now refusing to sell the album once it's released in physical CD form in stores.
"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 spokeswoman Erica Julkowski told Billboard.
The "Diva" singer's latest release has shattered iTunes records with more than 800,000 albums sold worldwide and more than 600,000 in the U.S. in just three days. Beyoncé quickly earned the best first-week digital album sales of all time and managed to make it to no. 2 on iTunes' list of Top Albums of 2013 (right after Justin Timberlake's The 20/20 Experience) after less than a week of availability.
Target's Julkowski continued to defend the company's decision, saying, "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."
The company collaborated with Beyonce for her album 4, offering six additional songs in a Target exclusive.
Beyoncé will remain solely available on iTunes at least through Wednesday, Dec. 18, and most retailers will receive it by Friday, Dec. 20. Direct Target competitor Walmart has no problem carrying the iconic singer's latest work.
"[Walmart is] happy to be able to carry her album and support all physical music," Walmart spokeswoman Sarah McKinney told Billboard.