Written by: Keith Tully
Reviewed: Tuesday 5th February, 2019
HMV has been acquired out of administration by a Canadian business called Sunrise Records, which has put plans in place to save 100 of the company’s UK outlets.
A total of 27 of the entertainment retailer’s stores are expected to be closed as part of a post-administration restructuring process but close to 1,500 jobs are set to be saved as a result of the deal done in recent days.
Store closures will see 455 HMV staff lose their jobs, with the company’s flagship outlet on Oxford Street in central London among those earmarked for closure.
HMV stores in Manchester’s Trafford Centre and in Sheffield and Glasgow are also set to be shut down in the coming weeks.
In buying HMV, Sunrise Records fended off competition for the purchase from Mike Ashley, the owner of Sport Direct, who last year acquired the department store chain House of Fraser out of administration for a price of £90 million.
The price paid by Sunrise Records to buy HMV has not been revealed but the company’s chief executive Doug Putman has expressed delight at being able to complete the purchase.
“We are delighted to acquire the most iconic music and entertainment business in the UK and add nearly 1,500 employees to our growing team,” Mr Putman said in a statement.
“By catering to music and entertainment lovers, we are incredibly excited about the opportunity to engage customers with a diverse range of physical format content, and replicate our success in Canada.
“We know the physical media business is here to stay and we greatly appreciate all the support from the suppliers, landlords, employees and most importantly our customers.”
HMV fell into administration a few days after Christmas 2018, with its financial difficulties attributed in large part to a rise in prevalence of streaming services that have helped radically reduce sales of CDs and DVDs within the entertainment industry.
A more general trend towards online shopping has helped to put pressure on the finances of a wide range of different retail businesses right across the UK.
Those and other pressures saw numerous high profile retailers enter into administration last year and tens of thousands of jobs have been lost within the industry in recent quarters.