HMV (LSE: HMV) promises more collect-at-store gig tickets (there’s a new partnership with Seatwave), in-store cinema screens and “further pay-to-play gaming centres” on top of the current five, after slimming its pre-tax loss in the half-year to October 24.
Pre-tax loss reduced by £2.6 million to £24.9 million, as sales rose 5.6 percent to £797 million.
— A new Waterstones.com fufillment centre, which processed two million books in the week before October 1, was completed late, meaning HMV won’t now realise the anticipated £5 million benefit until 2010/11.
— Indeed, Waterstones sales followed the book market down 4.3 percent and have been getting worse, meaning its operating loss finished £3.6 million higher at £12.9 million.
— But HMV is continuing okay on the new strategy devices in 2007. Technology and entertainment products are now up from seven percent to nine percent of sales.
— Debt increased by £14.5 million to £88.1 million mostly thanks to the acquisition of 50 percent of digital music retailer 7digital. As it announced at the time, HMV will use 7digital to relaunch HMV.ca downloads, power a new UK HMV.com in “early 2010” and a new e-books store for Waterstones.com