Computer games boost HMV sales

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The Independent Online

Computer game sales and the roll out of “next generation” stores have helped HMV post strong annual profits, just one year into its turnaround plan.

Many had been predicting the death of music stores with the rise of consumers downloading from the internet. Yet HMV, which also owns bookseller Waterstones, yesterday pleased investors with a strong set of numbers.

It reported 10 per cent growth in the 16 weeks to 26 April. It added that before tax and exceptionals, full-year profits “will be at the upper end of market expectations”. Analysts believe the profits could range from £46 to £58m.

Simon Fox, the chief executive of the group said HMV had benefited from the strong market in computer games “and we’re certainly expecting double-digit sales growth from games in the year ahead”.

He admitted there was still much to do as the group enters the second of a three-year overhaul, but added he was confident HMV was in a good position to go forward. “We are ahead of where we expected to be,” he said.