200 jobs secured as the music retailer's share in the entertainment venues and bars returns to founder
HMV has sold its shares in the G-A-Y venue group back to the company’s founder Jeremy Joseph.
The music retailer had previously held a majority share in the group, which owns venues and bars including London’s Heaven nightclub. G-A-Y was the last live entertainment business owned by HMV after they sold Hammersmith Apollo and the Mama group last year.
Speaking about the sale, which has safeguarded 200 jobs, HMV’s joint administrator Rob Harding said: “We are pleased to have completed the sale of HMV’s shareholding in G-A-Y to the natural purchaser.”
Meanwhile, in a statement posted on Facebook, G-A-Y founder Jeremy Joseph said: “I have completed the deal in buying HMV’s shares in G-A-Y and, with the shares I already own, G-A-Y is 100 per cent owned by me. That’s the brand, the bars and Heaven. With the team who work at G-A-Y, this is the beginning of a brand new era for G-A-Y.”
This comes just a day after reports leaked that the administrators responsible for the restructure of HMV are understood to be announcing plans to close between 60 and 100 stores this week.
According to The Telegraph, administrator Deloitte’s plans to restructure the business could result in the loss of 1,500 jobs at the music retailer. The location of the stores set to be closed are yet to be finalised, but the chosen shops will remain open until all their stock has been sold.
HMV went into administration last month, putting over 4,000 jobs and 223 stores at risk, but hopes of a rescue deal have been raised after restructuring firm Hilco bought the company’s £176 million worth of debt. The company are believed to be in talks with record labels, suppliers and HMV’s landlords as part of a plan to keep the retailer afloat in some capacity.