HMV sales slide

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STRUGGLING entertainment retailer HMV posted another slump in underlying sales, suffering significant market value declines in its core music, visual and games markets in a summer that saw a very quiet new release schedule.

The 91-year-old firm said sales at HMV stores open over a year fell 11.6 per cent in the 20 weeks to September 15.

“The like-for-like decline was less marked towards the end of the period and we should be helped in the remainder of the year by a strong pipeline of new releases in the music, DVD and games markets ahead of Christmas,” said chief executive Trevor Moore, who succeeded Simon Fox earlier this month.

Total sales, including the impact of store closures, declined 14.8 per cent.

HMV, famous for its Nipper the dog trademark, has been shifting its emphasis from fast-declining CD, DVD and games markets into the growth markets of new technology products.

It said sales of portable digital technology devices, products and services continued to grow strongly in the latest trading period.

HMV, which made a loss of £16.2m in the 2011-12 year has forecast a return to profit in the current year, reflecting disruption to rival computer games retailer Game and better terms with key music and film suppliers.

The firm, which earlier this year sold the Hammersmith Apollo for £32m, said it is still reviewing the remaining HMV Live business.