February 5, 2019 / 7:43 AM / 10 months ago

UK music retailer HMV sold to Canada's Sunrise Records

FILE PHOTO: Pedestrians walk past an HMV shop in central London, Britain December 28, 2018. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

LONDON (Reuters) - HMV, the British music retailer that collapsed after Christmas, has been sold to the owner of Canada’s Sunrise Records in a deal that will save 100 stores and 1,487 jobs, its joint administrators said on Tuesday.

Sunrise Records CEO Doug Putman said he was delighted to acquire “the most iconic music and entertainment business in the UK”, and would aim to replicate his company’s success in Canada.

The administrators said 27 stores were not included in the deal and would close immediately, resulting in 455 redundancies.

HMV, Britain’s best known record store chain, has been hit by competition from online rivals and music streaming services.

The group, which opened its flagship store on London’s Oxford Street in 1921, was rescued from a previous collapse in 2013 by restructuring specialist Hilco, but it collapsed again in December, blaming a 30 percent fall in the DVD market.

Putnam, the owner of toy and games distributor Everest Toys, said however that physical music and entertainment formats had a future, and he would aim to replicate the success of Sunrise Records, which he bought in 2014.

“We know the physical media business is here to stay and we greatly appreciate all the support from the suppliers, landlords, employees and most importantly our customers,” he said on Tuesday.

Will Wright, joint administrator at KPMG, said HMV’s suppliers were key in securing the sale.

Reporting by Paul Sandle; editing by Kate Holton

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