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464 Jobs Will Go As 37 HMV Stores To Close, Says Scottish Debt Solutions Provider, TrustDeeds.net

Beleaguered music retailer HMV is to see another 37 stores close with the loss of more than 450 jobs, says debt management company Scottish Trust Deeds. The news comes from the music store’s administrators Deloitte, who have spent the last few weeks attempting to restructure the business to try and keep the doors open. The move will have reduced the company’s 219 stores to 116. The stores are likely to close within six weeks, with administrators trying to relocate the staff affected to other stores and reduce the impact of the closures. However, it is likely that many will be made redundant.

 

Joint administrator Nick Edwards said: "As part of our ongoing review of HMV's financial position, we have undertaken a further review of the store portfolio and have identified an additional 37 stores for closure. This step has been taken in order to enhance the prospects of the restructured business continuing as a going concern. Together with the previously identified 66 closures, this restructuring will result in a residual portfolio of some 116 stores."

 

In an attempt to boost HMV’s flagging fortunes, musicians have agreed to appear in-store to draw in customers. This includes Sir Elton John, whose manager has confirmed the star will be performing in the near future. A spokesperson for Sir Elton said: “Elton has always been a big supporter of record shops. He will be doing something with HMV although as yet we cannot confirm what or when that would be."

 

HMV has struggled in recent years against the relentless march of digital music and films, which has seen customers abandon the high street in favour of downloading what they want at home instead. The company joins a number of other music stores that have run into financial trouble as the core music and DVD markets have fallen faster than expected. Christmas 2012 was a particularly tough time for the High Street, with camera chain Jessops, rental firm Blockbuster and fashion group Republic all calling in the administrators.  It is likely that some of the HMV’s stores that will close will be those with high market rents, such as one flagship store at London Heathrow airport.


A spokesperson for debt management company Scottish Trust Deeds said: “The closure of another 37 HMV stores is bad news on many fronts. It’s another gap opening up among the High Street shops, further damaging local communities and economies, and those people who are made redundant are going into a poor job market where hundreds of people are chasing one job. Ex-HMV staff will be going into a very tough job market.


“It remains to be seen what the impact on the debt management and personal insolvency rates will be. Government ministers have expressed how glad they are that personal insolvency rates have been decreasing, but we haven’t yet had the figures that will take into account the impact of Christmas spending.
“For a proportion of HMV staff who are in debt and have been making ends meet, losing their job will be disastrous.”

 

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