Jobs to go as Blockbuster store closures begin

12:30 19 January 2013

The chain has gone into administration. File picture: PA Wire

The chain has gone into administration. File picture: PA Wire

Blockbuster is to close 129 of its 528 stores in the coming weeks and make 760 employees redundant, administrators said today.

Thirty-one stores have already been put on notice of closure with a number of closing-down promotions announced. The Uxbridge-based firm went into administration on Wednesday.

Administrators Deloitte said an employee helpline and an “employee assistance programme” are in place to help staff find other jobs.

The firm’s trading woes were blamed on competition from internet firms and digital streaming of movies and games.

Lee Manning, from administrator Deloitte, said: “Having reviewed the portfolio with management, the store closure plan is an inevitable consequence of having to restructure the company to a profitable core which is capable of being sold.

“We would like to thank the company’s employees for their support and professionalism during this difficult time.

“We are also grateful to the customers for their continued support.”

Blockbuster, which opened its first store in London in 1989, had struggled to adapt to the changing market and rivalry from internet retailers including Netflix, Amazon’s LoveFilm and iTunes, Its collapse came just a day after music and entertainment chain HMV called in administrators, following dismal Christmas sales.

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