HMV suffers as summer sales plunge

Entertainment giant HMV struggled over the summer, with Group sales declining 19.4 per cent.

Total retail sales, hurt by the closure of 29 HMV stores, fell 21.8 per cent.

CEO Simon Fox says the trends for HMV’s retail business were ‘broadly unchanged’ for the period. But was keen to point out the positives, not least a growth in HMV Live attendees and increased sales for its new technology store concepts.

In technology, like for like sales in our initial six ‘Fast Forward’ stores have continued to grow by over 100%, and during the first quarter we have been preparing our enhanced technology offer, the benefit of which is not included in our first quarter," said Fox.

"The roll-out of these space changes to the majority of the 150 stores takes place during September, and is on track to be completed at the beginning of October.

:HMV Live enjoyed a good summer festival season, with attendances up by over 20% on a like for like basis, and by over 30% in total, and on 6 September we successfully opened the HMV Ritz, a new 1500-capacity venue, in Manchester."

It’s been a tough time for HMV, having sold HMV Canada and Waterstone’s to secure a new credit facility. The Group doesn’t have long to satisfy its lenders, and will need a big Christmas, which it believes it can achieve, to complete the turnaround.

Overall, our plans for the Christmas trading period are on track, and we are focused on providing HMV customers with the very best offers across all of our product categories and live venues,” added Fox.

HMV also announced this morning that Mark Hodgkinson has joined from Asda to become e-commerce and marketing director.

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