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Britain's HMV faces the music as retailer calls in administrators


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Britain's HMV faces the music as retailer calls in administrators

 

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File Photo: An employee poses with CDs at a store of music retailer HMV on Oxford Street in London April 5, 2013. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor

 

(Reuters) - Music retailer HMV said on Friday it was calling in the administrators, blaming a worsening market for entertainment CDs and DVDs, to become the latest victim of brutal trading conditions in Britain's retail sector.

 

The accounting firm KPMG has been named as the administrator and intends to keep the business running while it seeks a potential buyer, HMV said in a statement.

 

Will Wright, Neil Gostelow and David Pike from KPMG's Restructuring practice have been confirmed as joint administrators to HMV Retail Limited and HMV Ecommerce Limited, KPMG said in a statement late Friday.

 

The retailer, one of Britain's best-known high street stores, went into administration in 2013 before its rescue by restructuring specialist Hilco, but it has since been hit by competition from online rivals and music streaming services.

 

Sky News earlier reported that about 2,200 jobs were at risk if HMV went into administration, adding that the company had been in talks with leading names in the recorded music industry for funding, but that those discussions came to nothing.

 

HMV was opened on London's Oxford Street by English composer Edward Elgar in 1921 and made famous by the image of the "dog and trumpet".

 

"During the key Christmas trading period, the market for DVDs fell by over 30 percent compared to the previous year, and whilst HMV performed considerably better than that, such a deterioration in a key sector of the market is unsustainable," said Paul McGowan, Executive Chairman of HMV and its owner Hilco Capital, which paid around 50 million pounds ($63.47 million) for the group in 2013.

 

"The company has suffered from the ongoing wave of digital disruption sweeping across the entertainment industry", said Wright, a joint administrator and partner at KPMG.

 

"Over the coming weeks, we will endeavour to continue to operate all stores as a going concern while we assess options for the business, including a possible sale", he added.

 

Britain's retailers had been hoping Christmas would revive spending after a year for much of the sector that has seen a string of store groups go out of business or close shops.

 

Weakening consumer spending, uncertainty over Britain's exit from the European Union, rising labour costs and higher business property taxes, has spread gloom across the retail industry.

 

In the years running up to its first rescue in 2013, HMV struggled to hold its own against supermarkets and online services in sales of CDs, DVDs and video games.

 

More recently, traditional players in the music industry have been hit by the growing popularity of online streaming services such as Spotify <SPOT.N> and Apple Inc's <AAPL.O> Apple Music, which this year became the recording industry's single biggest revenue source.

 

HMV - which had a hand in The Beatles' big break in the 1960s, recommending the group's demo record to publishers - had around 230 stores and over 4,000 staff before it went into administration in 2013. It currently has 125 stores around Britain and employs 2,025 people.

 

($1 = 0.7878 pound)

 

 
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-- © Copyright Reuters 2018-12-29
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An inevitable  result of the times. From live  broadcast to vinyl to audio tape to cd/dvd to open internet.

Local grocers to  supermarkets  to malls.....also suffering the  growing trend to avoid.

Advantages and disadvantages.

Vulnerable.

All Corporate  controlled.

 

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The old music industry is now totally dead. A new paradigm is here, where music has largely lost its value and the streaming giants sit in their buildings of glass and steel able to pay salaries and electric bills to their staff whilst the artist gets a pittance. 

Vinyl has made a small comeback and will never fully disappear. CDs are hampered by the fact that apple have largely stopped making units with CD players built in - one has to buy an external unit.

audio with lossless compression is still hardly utilized by the masses except for audiophiles, and the majority of music is consumed in YouTube and other streaming apps at appalling quality. 

Some artists can still sell cds at gigs, but that’s a dwindling prospect too. Having been in the business for 25 years it’s still hard to see where the future is headed but in terms of physical sales - it’s not very optimistic. Artists now have to be doubly creative with the tools available and in some ways it’s a whole lot better than it has ever been, but legislation has to be put in place that protects the copyright holder rather than the aggregators taking all the money.

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15 minutes ago, eeworldwide said:

The old music industry is now totally dead. A new paradigm is here, where music has largely lost its value and the streaming giants sit in their buildings of glass and steel able to pay salaries and electric bills to their staff whilst the artist gets a pittance. 

Vinyl has made a small comeback and will never fully disappear. CDs are hampered by the fact that apple have largely stopped making units with CD players built in - one has to buy an external unit.

audio with lossless compression is still hardly utilized by the masses except for audiophiles, and the majority of music is consumed in YouTube and other streaming apps at appalling quality. 

Some artists can still sell cds at gigs, but that’s a dwindling prospect too. Having been in the business for 25 years it’s still hard to see where the future is headed but in terms of physical sales - it’s not very optimistic. Artists now have to be doubly creative with the tools available and in some ways it’s a whole lot better than it has ever been, but legislation has to be put in place that protects the copyright holder rather than the aggregators taking all the money.

Just sell your music to streaming services, i love spotify and I am paying for it. I see it as no different to selling a CD or Vinyl. 

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The only real way for musical artists to make money now is to tour and promote. Just reality. The big money days are over for the most part. Just a few artists making big money. For the rest, it is grind, grind, grind. Of course many will say that is how it has always been. 

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