HMV reports further fall in sales
Struggling entertainment retailer HMV has reported a further fall in sales following what it described as a "very quiet" summer for releases of new albums, films and computer games.
In an interim statement issued this morning HMV said like-for-like sales dropped 11.6% in the 20 weeks ending 15 September although it expects sales to improve during the rest of the year due to a strong pipeline of new releases. Total group sales declined by 14.8%.
The retailer said sales of MP3 players and other accessories such as headphones had continued to grow strongly in the period, driven by a programme of store refits and the development of its in-store service proposition.
HMV completed the disposal of the Hammersmith Apollo for £32 million in the period, which enabled it to amend the terms of its existing £220 million bank facility with its lenders and extend it to September 2014.
Trevor Moore, chief executive, said: "These numbers reflect the challenging markets in which we operate. However, the like for like decline was less marked towards the end of the period and we should be helped in the remainder of the year by a strong pipeline of new releases in the music, DVD and games markets ahead of Christmas."
HMV made a pre-tax loss of £16.2 million in the year to 28 April as its struggled against tough high street conditions and competition from internet downloads. However it expects to make a return to profitability in the current financial year.
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