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Online spearheads Zavvi growth

Ben Parfitt
High Street retailer Zavvi has heralded a successful first year on the market by announcing strong improvements over the performance of the company it bought out in 2007 – Virgin Megastores.

Sales in its online operations increased an impressive 148 per cent over the last twelve months compared to the year before. In-store sales also climbed 10.2 per cent.

Games were a solid performer for Zavvi, capturing 30 per cent of the retailer’s total sales – officially its second biggest product category behind DVD. Of note was the month of May, where the release of Grand Theft Auto IV and Wii Fit saw Zavvi capture its biggest slice of UK market share in the sector yet.

CEO Simon Douglas said of Zavvi’s games performance: “Games sales continue to grow and now represent Zavvi’s second biggest product category – in the near future games will challenge DVD as our lead format.

“Zavvi’s commitment to games can be seen in our forthcoming manager’s conference which will be focused heavily towards games, including a huge interactive demonstration area for Zavvi managers to experience the major forthcoming releases at first hand.”

The firm also noted a huge 300 per cent increase in sales of Blu-Ray movies. Whilst movies as whole increased by two per cent, music suffered an 18 per cent like-for-like drop in the period.

“We are delighted with our first year of trading,” Douglas added. “We have achieved a lot and have come along way as both a business and a brand – but we are not complacent as there is still a lot to do to build on our first successful year of trading in what is becoming a challenging economic climate.”

The firm also announced plans for the opening of its biggest ever store in Liverpool at the end of the month, which it claims will house the biggest games offering in the city. It also plans to open five to ten new stores every year for the next three years. Zavvi also promises to lift the lid on its upcoming digital downloads strategy shortly.

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Tags: games , sales , share , first , financials , results , year , zavvi

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