UK Games Retailer HMV Bought by Hilco
141 stores should be saved.
HMV, the UK entertainment (including video games) retailer that went into administration earlier this year, has been saved – for now – by retail restructuring firm Hilco. In a press release published on Friday, Hilco confirmed that it has acquired “the business and certain assets” from Deloitte, which was acting as administrator. The purchase includes 141 stores, including 25 that had previously been destined to close at the command of the administrators, and around 2,500 employees.
In various statements, Hilco has made reference to support for the chain of stores from the British public, including sympathetic landlords who've agreed to negotiate with the buyer. CEO Paul McGowan said:
“We have spent a number of weeks negotiating revised terms with landlords and the key suppliers to the business, all of whom have been supportive of our plans to maintain an entertainment retailer on the High Street.”
Ian Topping, the former Chief Executive of the Steinhoff Group (a retail group that owns other businesses) in the UK who will be one of the leads on the Hilco team, said:
“The reaction of the British public to the administration of HMV shows a strong desire for the business to continue to trade and we hope to play a constructive part in delivering that.”
Hilco has already worked to restore HMV in Canada, though representatives believe success will be harder in the UK thanks to competition from the likes of Game. HMV has been in the country since 1921, so customers have reason to hope that Hilco will bring it back to strength.