HMV reports dire trading

HMV Group has reported tumbling sales across the business in the face of a continuing weak market, as it agrees to sell book chain Waterstone’s.

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Total sales across the group, including Waterstone’s, fell 16.6% in the three months to 30 April. Sales were down 13.7% for the year.

Like for like sales across the group were down 13.6% for the year and quarter.

HMV took the brunt of the fall with like for like sales for the quarter slipping 15.1%.

Waterstone’s like for like sales fell 8.4% during the period, down 3.8% for the year.

The group’s Live division, which includes live music venues and festivals, was the one bright spot in the business performance reporting a 15.7% rise in like for like sales across all venues.

HMV’s trial of increasing the space dedicated to technology also appears to be making an impact as trial stores have outperformed the rest of the estate.

The group has now closed 19 of the 60 stores earmarked for closure, 13 further HMV stores are due to close in the next three months.

The Group expects to report full year pre-tax profit of around £28.5m.

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