HMV sees sales rise

HMV group says it will seek “further new initiatives” following its move into live music promotion and ticketing this year.

HMV

The group reported like for like sales at its music to games retail division HMV UK & Ireland rose by 1.9% in its full year results, while sales at its book retail chain Waterstones fell by 3.8% compared to the previous 12 months.

The group, which also owns a string of HMV stores internationally, reported total group sales grew by 4.4% to £1,956.7m.

Chief executive Simon Fox says he will be “looking at further growth opportunities” following a year in which it signed deals to promote joint events with independent cinema chain Curzon and mobile concessions with Orange.

New chairman Robert Swannell adds “The step we have made this year to invest in live music venues and ticketing is the first beyond the current [three year] plan, and shareholders can expect further new initiatives.”

He says these moves will underpin its “clear strengths as the only specialists retailer of scale in our markets” despite an “absence of effective government action” to target the “free illegal digital market.”

HMV bought 25 former Zavvi stores after its high street music and games rival collapsed into administration over Christmas.

HMV’s flagship store in London reported that it had sold out of CDs by Michael Jackson within 72 hours of the superstar’s death and had to order more stock for the start of this week.

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