190 staff redundancies have been made across HMV's head office and distribution network, administrators have announced.
Deloitte LLP - who were appointed administrators on Jan. 15, following HMV's poorer-than-expected trading over the holiday season - stated that, at present, there have been no job losses among the retail chain's in-store staff. With the exception of HMV's Ireland 16 outlets, which were shuttered Jan. 16, all 223 of HMV's U.K. stores (including 9 Fopp outlets) currently remain open for trading.
Confirming the 190 redundancies, Nick Edwards, joint administrator, said in a statement: "Since our appointment as Administrators over two weeks ago, we have been assessing the financial position of HMV. Following this review, a number of redundancies at the head office and distribution centres have been made. Although such decisions are always difficult, it is a necessary step in restructuring thebusiness to enhance the prospects of securing its future as a going concern."
Edwards continued: "We have been very pleased with the level of interest in the business as a going concern, whilst the response from customers has demonstrated the demand to see HMV remain on the high street. Equally, the support received from suppliers has been very positive and has enabled us to continue trading during the administration. As a result of all of these factors, I remain hopeful we will be able to secure a future for a restructured business."
As previously reported, Deloitte is working alongside retail restructuring company Hilco U.K. in joint-management of HMV, while they attempt to secure a whole or part buyer for the nationwide chain. Hilco U.K. acquired HMV's debt Jan. 22 (effectively gaining control of the company) for a reported sum of £40 million ($63 million) - a vastly reduced sum compared to the £176.1 million ($285.4 million) underlying net debt that HMV announced in its December 2012 Interim Results.
According to reports published by the BBC and Gawker, news of the 190 job cuts was first announced by disgruntled HMV employers via the company's official Twitter feed. The Tweets, which have since been removed, reportedly included employees bemoaning the "mass execution of loyal employeeswho love the brand." According to a screen grab published on Gawker, another Tweet read: "Sorry we've been quiet for so long. Under contract we've been unable to say a word or - more importantly - tell the truth."