Deloitte’s Neville Kahn to lead HMV administration

DELOITTE ADMINISTRATORS have been called to struggling high street music retailer HMV.

A company statement has said the board believes it is unable to continue trading outside of an insolvency process.

Deloitte administrators, and partners, Neville Kahn, Nick Edwards and Rob Harding have been lined up.

Kahn and Edwards, along with Chris Farrington, were appointed joint administrators to electrical retailer Comet earlier this year and saw all stores close, about 236, as well as the loss of about 6,611 jobs. Kahn, who features as 34th on the Accountancy Age Financial Power List 2013, also worked post-collapse at Woolworths, which saw all its stores close in 2009 and the loss of about 27,000 permanent and temporary staff.

In December, HMV announced that due to tough market conditions and uncertainties it would probably fail to comply with its banking covenants at the end of January but added it was in discussions with its lender.

However, since then the company made the announcement that insolvency was imminent but said it believes the administrators will continue to trade the business while it seeks to obtain a buyer.

The Financial Services Authority has temporarily suspended HMV from the official list of AIM, pending clarification of the company’s financial position.

Sales from continuing operations were down 13.5% to £288.6m in HMV’s interim results for the 26 weeks ended 27 October 2012.

However, operating loss declined to £24.1m compared to £33.2m from the year before, with group loss after tax also reducing to £36.1m from £50.1m the previous year.

In August, the group announced that former Best Buy Europe chief financial officer Ian Kenyon would join the business in September. Best Buy Europe is a joint venture between Best Buy and Carphone Warehouse.

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