HMV debt bought by Hilco, gives ailing firm wiggle room

Restructuring firm Hilco has bought HMV's debt, giving it effective power over the doddering disc-dealer.

Luke Westaway Senior editor
Luke Westaway is a senior editor at CNET and writer/ presenter of Adventures in Tech, a thrilling gadget show produced in our London office. Luke's focus is on keeping you in the loop with a mix of video, features, expert opinion and analysis.
Luke Westaway
2 min read

HMV's poor fortunes may be on the turn, as restructuring firm Hilco has bought the doddering disc-dealer's debilitating debt, CNET understands.

The move should give HMV a little more financial breathing room, which it will need if it wants to turn its business into something that can compete with all-powerful online retailers like Amazon.

Snapping up the chain's debt means Hilco will likely have a lot of power over HMV's next moves, though it doesn't own the string of shops outright -- a buyer could still swoop in and buy the lot.

Administration administrator Deloitte said last week it had seen over 50 parties interested in buying HMV, which operates over 200 shops in the UK, with more than 4,000 employees. It doesn't appear that shops will be closing, however -- CNET understands stores will stay open and the plan for now is business as usual.

Hilco has form when it comes to buying out chunks of HMV. The firm bought out HMV Canada several years ago, while the BBC reports music and film studios reportedly favour a Hilco buyout now.

Meanwhile, a poll of 11,000 Brits conducted by Digital Spy saw 46 per cent of those surveyed saying that HMV hadn't moved with the times.

It's been a rough few weeks for the UK high street, with HMV following Jessops -- and preceding Blockbuster -- on the path into administration. HMV has at least started accepting vouchers again, as of today.

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