HMV to shut down 66 stores

London, Feb 7 (IANS) Popular music chain HMV's 66 retail stores will close over the next two months, a move that would cost around 1,000 people their jobs.

The affected stores employ 930 staff, BBC reported Thursday.

Earlier, about 190 jobs had been shed across HMV's head office and distribution network.

HMV has faced intense competition from online retailers, digital downloads and supermarkets in recent years.

The chain currently operates from 220 stores in Britain.

No fixed date has been set for the closure of the 66 identified stores, which would continue to trade in the meantime.

"This step has been taken in order to enhance the prospects of securing the business' future as a going concern," an official said.

HMV administrators have been in talks with restructuring specialist Hilco about taking over the firm.

Hilco, which already owns HMV Canada, has bought HMV's debt from its lenders, a move that could pave the way to taking full control of the company.

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