Blockbuster UK To Seek Buyer As Company Looks For Bankruptcy Protection

Blockbuster now becomes the second UK retailer this week to go into administration, the British equivalent of bankruptcy protection, after music and DVD chain HMV did the same on Tuesday. As it has in the U.S., the movie and video game rental giant has faced increasing competition from online streaming services, which in the UK include Lovefilm and Netflix. Deloitte, which was also hired by HMV, will take over the day-to-day operations at Blockbuster UK which has 528 stores and employs 4,190 staff. Stores will continue to do business while the firm seeks a buyer. In a statement, Deloitte’s Lee Manning said, “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 first Blockbuster UK store opened in 1989. In April 2011, Dish Network acquired Blockbuster Inc. in a bankruptcy auction for $320M. Blockbuster UK is owned by Dish, but operates separately from its U.S. parent.

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