Hilco closes HMV deal

Hilco UK has acquired more than 140 HMV stores in a deal reportedly valued at £50m. The firm acquired the music and film retailer’s Canadian business in 2011. 

Restructuring specialist Hilco UK has finalised its acquisition of HMV’s UK retail business, administrator Deloitte announced in a statement.

The deal has been widely reported to be valued at approximately £50 million (€58.8 million; $76.7 million). Representatives from Hilco and Deloitte declined to comment on specifics of the transaction.

The troubled music and film retail chain entered administration on 15 January. Hilco had previously acquired the company’s Canadian business in 2011, and provided HMV Canada with a C$26 million credit facility.

The sale gives Hilco ownership of 141 HMV stores, as well as the company’s headquarters and distribution functions, according to the statement. Hilco had previously acquired £176 million (€207.2 million; $269.9 million) of HMV’s debt in January for £34 million (€40 million; $52.1 million), which gave the restructuring firm de facto control of the company. Private Debt Investor took an in-depth look at the firm’s acquisition of HMV’s debt in its March issue.

“We have spent a number of weeks negotiating revised terms with landlords and the key suppliers to the business, all of whom have been supportive of our plans to maintain an entertainment retailer on the High Street,” Hilco CEO Paul McGowan said in a statement.

“We hope to replicate some of the success we have had in the Canadian market with the HMV Canada business which we acquired almost two years ago and which is now trading strongly. The structural differences in the markets and the higher level of competition in the UK will prove additional challenges for the UK business but we believe it has a successful future ahead of it.”

Hilco’s ownership team will be led by former Steinhoff Group chief executive Ian Topping and investment director Henry Foster. McGowan will chair the new business.