Blockbuster enters administration threatening 4,200 jobs

BLOCKBUSTER Entertainment is the latest High Street casualty, falling into administration with the potential for nearly 4,200 job losses.

The film and games rental business, which has 528 shops across the country, is a victim of changing consumer habits as more people download and stream films.

Administrators from Deloitte said the “core of the business” was still profitable and they hoped to preserve jobs and find a buyer.

Joint administrator Lee Manning said: “In recent years Blockbuster has faced increased competition from, internet based providers along with the shift to digital streaming of movies and games.

“We are working closely with suppliers and employees to ensure the business has the best possible platform to secure a sale, preserve jobs and generate as much value as possible for all creditors.

“The core of the business is still profitable and we will continue to trade as normal in both retail and rental whilst we seek a buyer for all or parts of the business as a going concern. During this time gift cards and credit acquired through Blockbuster’s trade-in scheme will be honoured towards the purchase of goods.”

Deloitte has been appointed to Blockbuster Entertainment and Blockbuster GB. The business is headquartered in Uxbridge.

The announcement comes as administrators acting for collapsed camera retailer Jessops have revealed further job losses at the Midland-based group.

Edward Williams, Rob Hunt and Matthew Hammond, of PwC, said they had been forced to axe 77 posts from the firm’s head office in Leicester.

The three administrators were appointed to The Jessop Group earlier this month but could not save the business from closure. All of the firm’s 187-strong network of stores have now been closed and stock is being returned to a supply hub.

Mr Hunt said: “Following the announcement of around 1,370 job losses at the Jessop’s stores last week, we have had to announce the decision to make 77 employees redundant at the head office in Leicester. This is a direct result of the difficult decision to close all of the stores.

“We are very grateful for the support we have received since our appointment and we will continue to ensure that employees are paid as they assist us during the closure.”