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View Full Version : HMV look set to hit the wall


Cliffjumper
2013-01-14, 09:39 PM
http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2013/jan/14/hmv-prepares-call-administrators

Apologies to anyone out there this hits financially, but in my experience the place is largely staffed by smug ****s who sneer down at any questions which don't jibe with their hipster tastes. Keeping prices twice as high as online retailers wasn't a particularly smart move either, ****wits. The place was happy to dick us all over before Amazon, Play and ebay became more widely used so it's hard to have a lot of sympathy.

Still, might be some nice vulture-friendly bargains to pick up over the next few weeks.

Denyer
2013-01-14, 10:57 PM
Doubtful... they didn't have much if anything of interest before. It'll just mean a glut of the last stuff to be remaindered turns up on Amazon and eBay at some point.

Thunderwave
2013-01-14, 11:03 PM
Movie/Music places having trouble shouldn't surprise people these days. Far to many of them use outdated pricing/company models that don't take into account modern media and the access everyone has to the internet these days.

That said, too bad i don't live in the UK. I do love going out of business sales and I LOVE screwing over hipsters.

Cliffjumper
2013-01-14, 11:33 PM
What's going to be interesting is watching them trying to find jobs where you aren't paid by how many lumps of metal you have embedded in your face.

@ Denyer: dunno, when MVC hit meltdown the amount of stuff they seemed to have dug out of a warehouse somewhere, all much more interesting than the stuff they had out before, and the prices it was at were rather tasty. I might bulk-buy Drive to further my aggressive attempts to make everyone watch it.

Denyer
2013-01-14, 11:39 PM
Mmm, I did find a furry-cased copy of p.h.u.q. by the Wildhearts when Woolies were going out a business, that instinct says was probably the same one I passed over in a sale in a different branch a few years earlier. And picked up Caffeine's only album in a random Virgin sale, IIRC, and got unexpected gems such as Wonderland's only single... I think that was an Our Price in Wolverhampton.

Increasingly rare occurrences, though. Clearances are usually two hundred copies each of obscure nondescript metal or chart drek, liberally sprinkled all over the store, and not worth the time it'd take to sift through for anything but.

Skyquake87
2013-01-15, 12:02 AM
I had good experiences, for a time, shopping at hmv in leeds and bradford. the leeds one is a shell now, barely sells ... well i don't know what they sell. physical formats have been shoved in an embarrassed corner, and there's just space with plinths with t-shirts ... and massive headphones... i don't get it.

they used to do a roaring trade in 12" vinyls to djs, and there used to be a bit of buzz about the place. in the last ten years, they have exclusively employed mumbling emos and its been largely downhill since then.

i do feel bad for the staff at my local branch...they all seem like the helpful enthusiasts you normall get in independant record shops.

hmv is the last major music retail chain to go, isn't it? I remember there used to be loads, Andy's Records, Our Price, Virgin, MVC, hmv...

that leaves just Waterstones and WHSmith as the last major non-clothes/ food/ chemists retailers left on the high street. kind of sad really. like cliffy says, ripping consumers off for 20 years probably didn't help. 16.99 for imports, 12.99 for new releases...

electro girl
2013-01-15, 12:28 AM
I was in there the other day just for a quick look around and was struck by the fact that there was very little for me there. Although Now I'll have to shop online for non chart CDs.

Warcry
2013-01-15, 04:29 PM
What's going to be interesting is watching them trying to find jobs where you aren't paid by how many lumps of metal you have embedded in your face.
So it's not just Canada where the employees are like that? The staff have often a pretty bad attitude here too, though less "sneering emo" and more "burnt out, disinterested stoner".

What's struck me about HMV recently is how little music they actually sell anymore. The stores around here are 15% CDs at best, 50% DVDs and Blu-Ray, 10% books and comics and 25% random hipster memorabilia. It's been clear for a while that their core business is dying off, and they haven't been doing a good job of adapting to it.

Cliffjumper
2013-01-15, 04:35 PM
Thing is HMV have had chrome-plated warnings when all their rivals died off - every one a warning to drop prices (typically around 13 for a non-chart non-sale DVD or CD) and make the place more useful and less elitist. All ignored. You have to wonder whether they a) arrogantly decided lack of bricks & mortar competition meant they could do what the **** they liked and everyone would suck it up or b) the board decided it was going to hit the wall and just enjoy the hookers and coke while it lasted.

inflatable dalek
2013-01-15, 06:54 PM
Never had much of a problem with the staff (at least when being served, stop someone walking past to ask a question and they'd tend to look at you like Sam Beckett had just leapt into their body and they had no idea where or who they were), though my local stores tended to have more cute women than metal stud covered punks.

No sympathy at all for the store itself though. It's entire survival whilst others have floundered despite their generally higher prices was down to the endless 5 for a tenner style DVD offers, with DVD's constantly getting cheaper and more more worthless that was never going to be sustainable. What happened to Play this week shows online stores aren't unbeatable, HMV destroyed itself.


Interestingly, the Canadian HMV (no longer affiliated with ours) apparently had a good Christmas. So it is obviously possible to do it right.


Or Canadians are a decade behind us.

Denyer
2013-01-15, 07:06 PM
Play over-extended themselves to the point they were relying on the tax situation, though. Despite the prominence of Amazon there are other online bookstores that're growing... although that's more niche than music/films which, as already said, are finding their natural price in a world that's only going to keep adding to the decades of media already in circulation (even with Disney ****ing around with copyright extensions.)

Auntie Slag
2013-01-15, 07:24 PM
Does this mean FOPP will go down too? I think HMV owns them and they actually do decent prices on everything e.g. fairly recent DVD's for a fiver or three quid, and a decent range of music/film/other.

Everything's going to be Tesco's Express and Starbucks.

Sades
2013-01-20, 10:48 PM
I used to work at an HMV; not a piece of metal in my face. Nor do I smoke teh weedz. I did have weird hair, though, and a lot of my coworkers fit the above-mentioned description.

We were a busy store. Request upon request upon request for this and that in between stocking shelves/till point. Day in, day out. So if a retail peep in a busy store seems really disinterested when I speak to them, I tend to cut them a little slack unless they're decidedly unpleasant.


What's struck me about HMV recently is how little music they actually sell anymore. The stores around here are 15% CDs at best, 50% DVDs and Blu-Ray, 10% books and comics and 25% random hipster memorabilia. It's been clear for a while that their core business is dying off, and they haven't been doing a good job of adapting to it.

This (http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/story/2013/01/15/business-hmv-canada.html) article states that they're doing just fine so far (well, asides from the downsizing); possibly so, the W. Ed HMV is always busy whenever we go in. I wonder how long that's going to last?

He credits the retailer's perseverance in the Canadian market to a decision to abandon several low-margin entertainment products, like video games and technology hardware like tablets and iPod docking stations, in favour of higher margin branded products like superhero T-shirts and coffee mugs branded with rock bands like Kiss.

I don't know why, but I LOL'd.