In recent weeks we've reported on the worrying fate of the HMV brand in the UK; rather like GAME last year, it went into administration and 81 stores were closed down as the administrators worked to salvage the business. As one of only a few retailers that stocks a relatively substantial range of video games on the UK high street — alongside music, films, books and various devices — its loss would have been damaging to the games industry in the country and meant a high number of job losses.
Thankfully there's been competition for the brand, showing that there's still a marketplace that some businesses feel is worth pursuing. Despite rumoured interest from Walmart-owned Asda, it's now been confirmed that Hilco, the investment company that had already acquired the company's debt, has secured a £50 million deal to obtain ownership and keep the remaining 141 stores open. Joint administrator Nick Edwards has said the following.
We are delighted to have completed the sale of HMV’s UK retail business to Hilco UK.
The sale of the restructured portfolio secures the employment of 2,643 staff, saves one of the world's most iconic retail brands and provides a solid financial footing on which the business can be taken forward. We wish the Hilco UK and HMV teams every success with the business. I would like to thank all those stakeholders that have worked with us during the administration, but in particular the staff, suppliers and landlords for their support in making this deal possible.
Good news all around, especially for those remaining staff.