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Blockbuster UK saved by buyout, 264 stores to remain open

UK high street name Blockbuster has been saved from liquidation, thanks to a buyout from a European equity firm.

The famous DVD and games rental chain was set for the drop after going into administration at the beginning of the year, joining the likes of HMV and Jessops, both of which are still going.

Gordon Brothers Europe is the private equity firm that has taken control of the Blockbuster brand, buying it for a currently undisclosed sum. The company has already confirmed its intentions to save 264 stores open across the UK, a move which will save some 2,000 jobs.

Unfortunately the number of stores saved is just half of the total in the UK, and so a further 264 stores will be closed down. This means that around 2,000 jobs will be lost as part of the closure, so it’s not all good news.

It seems that Gordon Brothers Europe still sees an opportunity for a business like Blockbuster on the UK high street. “We acknowledge the industry is in transition; we know that we have a challenge ahead but there is still a market to be served,” Frank Morton, CEO of Gordon Brothers Europe, explained.

The reasons for Blockbuster being in its current situation are obvious. Services like Netflix and Lovefilm offer physical and digital rentals of movies, TV shows and the latest video games without us ever needing to leave our homes. With many areas of the UK receiving snow right now – we know, it’s almost April – the decision whether to go out to rent a DVD or just stream one at home is going to be an easy one for many.

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