I do wonder though about the future of the high street, Bill Quango has written some excellent posts here recently. of course HMV was a business whose time has passed. We are not going to but CD's and DVD's in shops when you can download them at home, its just a societal change and companies will go with it.
However, the sheer cost of high street space with rents and other taxes means that the Internet always wins. And the Internet creates fewer jobs and destroys our high streets. On the one hand, I think this is a sign of progress, times change with technology and no doubt people moaned about the passing of the horse and carriage as a form of transport 100 years ago. So be it.
But could we do something to change the terms of the tax incentives which are so skewed against bricks and mortar businesses? Would this help a create a better society with more jobs and social interaction? I doubt for example that grocery home delivery will ever approach 100% of the market, the scale of the producers is such that it can withstand the competition from dark stores, the internet won't always win.
So how about an enquiry into retailing off and on the net - should we push for one?
You beat me to it CU..So busy at the moment..not busy enough mind. Trade shows mostly.
As for HMV we looked at it properly almost exactly two years ago.
The consensus then ... 'They were doing the right things but had too little time to achieve them'..And we should have added , if we had known, the recession, triple dip will drag them down quicker.
That was the big, big problem. Something we discussed way back in 2008. A long recession is not survivable except by the strongest or newest or richest. Comet, HMV and even Jessops could have survived a shorter one.
Improved cashflow would have helped them continue with their transition to multi platform retailers.
But they've been getting a smaller slice of a smaller cake. It was not enough.
And the government hasn't any money either. The Portas money had 12 towns being given £100,000.
A tiny drop in a large, leaking, bucket. It won't achieve anything, even if it really knew what they wanted to achieve.
If you look on local papers websites the employees of both Jessops and HMV have generally only good things to say about their companies. Unusual for businesses that have struggled for years. Shows that the chief execs carried their people with them.
A real shame.
And a big problem that hasn't been much discussed is that each failing chain,especially specialist chains, gives one more reason not to visit the high street at all. If its all just Primark, Cafe Nero and The British Heart foundation, why go at all?
BTW - Who knows the link between Jessops and HMV ?