Sunrise beat off competition from the likes of UK business tycoon Mike Ashley for the crisis-hit firm. The Canadian retail giant will buy 100 of HMV’s stores securing nearly 1,500 jobs, but 27 unprofitable shops will close immediately, resulting in 455 redundancies. KPMG, which oversaw the process, will retain a further 122 employees at warehouse functions to assist in winding down operations.
The administrator will tell staff today if their store is closing before saying which stores will be lost.
Sunrise Records chief executive Doug Putman bought HMV’s Canadian business in 2017, expanding his small chain into a national operation with 80 outlets.
He said: “We are delighted to acquire the most iconic music and entertainment business in the UK and add nearly 1,500 employees to our growing team.
“By catering to music and entertainment lovers, we are incredibly excited about the opportunity to engage customers with a diverse range of physical format content and replicate our success in Canada.
“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.”
Will Wright, partner at KPMG and joint administrator, said: “We are pleased to confirm this sale which, after a complex process, secures the continued trading of the majority of the business.
“Our immediate concern is now to support those employees that have unfortunately been made redundant.”
Neil Gostelow, partner at KPMG and joint administrator, added: “We are grateful for the support of all key stakeholders including the suppliers whose support throughout this process has been key in securing this sale.”
HMV, which has previously fallen into administration, became the first high street casualty after Christmas when its owner Hilco called in corporate undertakers before the end of last year.
It was the second time the retail giant had collapsed in nearly six years having filed for administration in 2013.
Hilco blamed a “tsunami” of retail challenges for the latest collapse, highlighting business rate levels and the increasing use of streaming services for music and films.
Mr Ashley, who bought House of Fraser out of administration last year, had been hotly tipped as a potential buyer for HMV.
He owns more than 60 percent of Sports Direct and has bought companies including Evans Cycles, whole his company also owns stakes in French Connection and Debenhams.
On Monday, the BBC reported Debenhams is considering closing up to 20 of its shops this year as it enters crunch talks with banks over its borrowings.
The department store chain was reportedly considering making a move through a company voluntary agreement (CVA), enabling it to renegotiate its rent payments with landlords and accelerate the closure of shops.
In October, Debenhams revealed it was increasing its store closure plans from 10 to 50 shops over the next three to five years – putting 4,000 jobs at risk.