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HMV restructure could lead to closure of half its stores

Following last week’s acquisition of HMV’s £120 million debt, controlling interest Hilco is planning to streamline the music vendor’s operations by shutting down half of its 223 stores, reports The Daily Mail.

An eventual turnaround would validate the decision of HMV's lenders, RBS and Lloyds, to turn down higher bids from vulture funds – investors who strip the assets of acquired businesses - in favour of Hilco's purported £40 million bid.

The restructuring firm used the same strategy to save HMV’s Canadian arm – which became a Hilco subsidiary in 2011.

Fellow administration survivor Game has already declared its interest in available HMV properties and is likely to remain a front-runner for any potential sales against competition from major supermarket chains Morrisons, Tesco and Sainsbury’s.

The Telegraph has further reported that HMV’s administrator Deloitte appointed CBRE and Savills to be its property consultants, charging them to shortlist the chain’s least viable shops.

Hilco is also rumoured to be in acquisition talks with the administrators of another bedevilled high-street brand, Jessops. The deal could lead to the opening of in-store concessions as the Hilco is likely to merge its subsidiaries as a cost cutting measure.