HMV to close 60 stores

Retailer plans closures over the next 12 months, following poor Christmas trading period.
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HMV reported a decline in sales in its stores, of 12.9 per cent over the five-week Christmas period and 13.3 per cent in the ten-weeks to January 1st 2011.

UK and Ireland stores were the worst performers, with like-for-like sales down by 13.6 per cent over Christmas.

HMV said the drop in sales was down to a number of factors, including the severe weather over the Christmas shopping period.

In a statement to the City, HMV said: "The challenging entertainment markets, combined with the severe weather over our peak trading period, have had a negative impact on our trading year to date. In addition, there are well-reported consumer headwinds as we enter 2011.

"We are taking aggressive action as we continue to tightly manage our cost base. We expect to exit around 60 stores across our UK businesses over the next 12 months as we seek to reshape our store portfolio.

"In addition, we have identified a further £10m per annum of cost savings from across the group."

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