Finally this week HMV went into administration, when I say finally I have full sympathy for all staff who are affected, but the companies problems were so deep there was no other route. The management have destroyed the brand over the last decade.
I first wrote about HMV’s problem nearly two years ago in a blog post, in that time the shops haven’t changed at all. For a company that has so much history and once sold a premium product, it is now no more than junk shop.
Once upon a time, a company like HMV would have been run by someone who worked their way up fropm the shop floor and was passionate about the product they sold. Now it’s run by a guy who previously ran Jessop’s called Trevor Moore. He’s like Cameron, Osbourne and Clegg, he has no interest in his work or what the business is trying to achieve, he is born into a wold of privilege and entitlement and is merely there to leach the company of as much money as he can before he walks away leaving someone else to sort out the problems.
HMV’s ex-marketing manager has written a fantastic post about his time at the company and how management refused to see what was happening a decade ago whilst another great blog post is Bob Stanley’s who actually got to meet HMV management after he first started a campaign to save the company in early 2012, again they just told him he was wrong!
In contrast, a frustrating and boring interview with HMV’s Mark Hodgkinson (current marketing and e-commerce director) is a 2 minute read that will tell you just how clueless the management are and how lost the company is. The major problem can be spotted in the opening sentence: “the area of technology where we believe we can make a difference is in what we call portable entertainment devices. If you look at the direction that entertainment is moving in, more of it is experienced through portable gadgets now.” Portable devices took off 30 years ago with the Sony Walkman!
Here’s where I’m going to stop before I go off on another rant. If HMV does survive, I hope it will go back to it’s roots. The high street could really do with a decent vinyl stockist with staff who know about music and support local bands and are part of the community, but these stores couldn’t be massive superstores. If it does go, maybe we’ll get some independent stores back who could offer that service instead. Fingers crossed…