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HMV Bark Becomes Bite

It’s a real tale of retail, proof that if you hang around long enough, everything will come back into fashion- the dog barks back as HMV claims an entertainment market share of just under 15% in Q2 of this year, coming second only to Amazon.

In the 12 weeks up to July 6th this year, HMV claimed a spend share of 14.7% across UK entertainment retail, which includes physical sales of videos, games and music, according to Kantar Worldpanel research quoted here in Music Week. Profits rose by 9.2% overall and the Hilco owned chain has reduced its overheads from £52m to £14m, in addition to bringing the overall number of stores from 144 to 125. Strangely, physical album sales were up by 12% according to The Telegraph, bucking every other sales trend over the last few years. Despite the positive figures, HMV did not release any actual profit numbers, so we are only seeing part of the picture.

HMV are reportedly now planning to open four new stores, alongside re-entering the Irish market. This week, they reopened a Tokyo store that closed four years ago, this time focusing on vinyl and second hand CDs.

Kantar Worldpanel Strategic Insight Director Fiona Keenan said: “HMV appears to be making a comeback on the high street following a strong performance over the past quarter. It has increased its share of the entertainment market from 13.6% to 14.7% – a significant improvement on its record low of 10.7% following its administration last year”.

Hilco Chief Executive Paul McGowan referred to HMV as “very profitable” during the quarter. It’s thought that a major focus for the retailer for the rest of 2014 will be video games, following the launch of the Playstation 4 and Xbox One late last year.

Despite its various ongoing battles with publishers, authors and Disney, Amazon were up year-on-year by 3% to a 21.8% share of the entertainment market.

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