129 Blockbuster stores closing down, 760 job cuts likely

Written on:January 21, 2013
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Blockbuster store in Knutsford, England

Blockbuster follows Jessops and Comet, failing to compete with online players

Blockbuster, which fell into administration last week, is set to close 129 of its 528 stores, slashing 760 jobs, as confirmed by its administrators Deloitte. Among the 129 stores 23 Scottish stores include one at Broughty Ferry and another at Stobswell in Dundee, as well as single outlets at Forfar, Kennoway, Kinross and Perth.

31 Blockbuster stores closing down have put up notice and have also announced a number of closing down sales. Blockbuster promises to continue trading until suitable buyer is found for the DVD rental specialist retailer, which has risked 4,190 jobs by collapsing into administration.

Blockbuster store closures announcement comes close on heels of music retail giant HMV and camera retailer Jessops’ collapse. The devastating impact of the internet has been also seen in the demise of electrical chain Comet last year, which also cited competition from online players as reason for its downfall.

Deloitte announced earlier that gift cards, credit bought through its trade-in scheme for second-hand movies and games, as well as operating its loyalty scheme, would be honoured. An employee helpline and an ‘employee assistance programme’ are in place to help staff find other jobs, Blockbuster’s administrator said. The Blockbuster’s administrator also confirmed that in the past few years Blockbuster has run into trouble due to increased competition in the rental market with online offerings from Netflix and Lovefilm.

Blockbuster dominated the UK film rental market in the 1990s and still has two million regular customers, with sales of £182 million for the year to December. But poor trading over Christmas meant it posted a £300,000 loss rather than the £4.5 million profit expected.


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