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HMV Group Seeks British Bankruptcy, Sale Possible

Turnaround company Better Capital and Hilco are thought to be potential buyers

HMV Group plc, a British music retailer, has filed for administration, the U.K.’s equivalent to Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

London-based HMV sells films, games, music and digital technology products out of 223 stores across the U.K. For now, the stores will remain operational.

HMV could be sold through the administration. Better Capital LLP, a U.K.-based turnaround vehicle, may reportedly look at buying the chain, as well as Hilco.

Nick Edwards, Rob Harding and Neville Kahn of Deloitte have been appointed the joint administrators for the case.

“HMV is an iconic retailer and continues to be a very popular brand, but as we have seen with many high street retailers, the market is changing rapidly and conditions are currently very tough,” says Edwards.

HMV lists Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN), Live Nation Worldwide Inc. and other mass-merchant retailers as its largest competitors on its website. The company filed for administration after it struggled to obtain additional financing.

Some of HMV’s subsidiaries, HMV Guernsey Ltd, HMV Hong Kong Ltd., HMV Ireland Ltd., HMV Singapore Ltd. and 7Digital Group, will remain outside of the administration process.

HMV, which stands for His Master’s Voice, was delisted from the London Stock Exchange on Jan. 15. The company, founded in 1921, was publicly listed since 2002.

 

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