27 HMV stores to close nationally - but Milton Keynes will remain OPEN

    It has been confirmed that the HMV Store in Milton Keynes will not be closing following the announcement of a number of store closures in other locations today.

    HMV has been bought out of administration by Canada's Sunrise Records but the deal will see 27 stores close including its flagship Oxford Street site.

    Sunrise will keep on 100 stores including Milton Keynes, saving 1,487 jobs - but the closures will spell redundancy for 455 people while a further 122 are being kept on by administrators to help wind down warehouse operations.

    HMV collapsed into administration in December for the second time in six years, after weak Christmas trading and a collapse in demand for CDs and DVDs amid the rise in streaming.

    It became a takeover target for Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley - who Sky News revealed had demanded a six-month rent holiday from landlords if he were to buy the chain, to add to a slew of acquisitions over the last year including House of Fraser and Evans Cycles.

    Instead, HMV has now come under the control of 34-year-old Sunrise owner and chief executive Doug Putman, who has bought the business for an undisclosed sum.

    He would only tell Sky's Ian King Live he had paid a "fair amount" for the business and signalled that the stores to be closed were a result of high costs, such as rents, threatening profitability.

    He said: "Many landlords have been great for us, very supportive... you hope to save every store but if you just can't break even on it, and there's no future breaking even on it, it's something you just can't keep on."

    Stores will continue to trade under their current name, including four Fopp sites.

    Mr Putman said in the announcement: "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.

    "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."

    Will Wright, partner at KPMG and joint administrator, said: "We are pleased to confirm this sale which, after a complex process, secures the continued trading of the majority of the business.

    "Our immediate concern is now to support those employees that have unfortunately been made redundant."

    Sunrise, founded in 1977, was acquired by Mr Putman in 2014 and went on to take over stores vacated by HMV Canada when it went bust.

    Additional reporting by Sky News.

    More from Local News

    Local News

    Weather

    • Tue

      19°C

    • Wed

      19°C

    • Thu

      18°C

    • Fri

      17°C

    • Sat

      18°C