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HMV goes into administration - again

In yet another sign of trouble on the UK's high streets, music and film retailer HMV has called in the administrators for the second time in six years.

Declining sales of physical media such as CDs, DVDs and Blu-rays, online competition and the rise of streaming music and film services has led to accountancy firm KPMG being appointed as administrators of the struggling business by the High Court.

Owner Hilco, which rescued the chain from administration in 2013, says the existing 2200 stores around the UK will continue to trade while a new buyer is sought. 

Paul McGowan, executive chairman of HMV and its owner Hilco Capital, told the BBC: "Even an exceptionally well-run and much-loved business such as HMV cannot withstand the tsunami of challenges facing UK retailers over the last 12 months on top of such a dramatic change in consumer behaviour in the entertainment market."

KPMG says HMV will honour customers' gift cards as long as the stores continue trading. So if you got any HMV vouchers for Christmas, you'd be wise to spend them soon.

The market for CDs and DVDs/Blu-rays is expected to decline by a further 17% in 2019. Streaming and digital downloads overtook sales of physical formats for the first time in 2015.

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Andy Clough

Andy is Global Brand Director of What Hi-Fi? and has been a technology journalist for 30 years. During that time he has covered everything from VHS and Betamax, MiniDisc and DCC to CDi, Laserdisc and 3D TV, and any number of other formats that have come and gone. He loves nothing better than a good old format war. Andy edited several hi-fi and home cinema magazines before relaunching whathifi.com in 2008 and helping turn it into the global success it is today. When not listening to music or watching TV, he spends far too much of his time reading about cars he can't afford to buy.