Moorfields Corporate Recovery called to Blockbuster

MOORFIELDS CORPORATE RECOVERY has been called to Blockbuster, the DVD rental retailer which has collapsed for a second time this year. 

Simon Thomas (pictured) and former insolvency trade body R3 president Nick O’Reilly were appointed joint administrators to TS Operations limited, which trades as Blockbuster.

Blockbuster operates one of the UK’s largest chains of film and game rental stores, with 264 stores and around 2,000 employees. 

In January this year, Deloitte administrators, and partners, Lee Manning, David Smith and Neville Kahn were appointed. They claimed the company had run into trouble due to increased competition in the rental market from online offerings such as Netflix and Lovefilm.

At the time of collapse in January Blockbuster had 528 stores and 4,190 staff, however since appointment, Deloitte administrators closed 264 stores. However, they managed to save 2,000 jobs and sell 264 stores to rental chain restructuring specialists Gordon Brothers Europe, which also bought Morrisons in the same year.

Gordon Brothers Europe tried to turn the business around by re-negotiating with landlords on retail outlets, investing in marketing strategies and trying to develop a digital platform. But poor trading in rental and sales has led to another administration for the business.

Moorfield’s Simon Thomas, said: “This is obviously a difficult and upsetting time for everyone involved at Blockbuster, in particular employees who have endured a stressful period since January this year. We appreciate that staff and customers will want a speedy resolution, however, we must ask people to be patient over the coming weeks.

“We are pleased to say that there are parties who are interested in parts of the business. Our focus will be to secure a future for as much of the business as possible as well as trying to save jobs before Christmas.”

Moorfields Corporate Recovery was formerly the insolvency arm of RSM Bentley Jennison. Moorfields broke away when RSM was sold to Tenon for £76m in 2010.


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