Opinion on Bookstores

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Type Product title / description Pub Price
CommentWire
CommentWire

HMV: no longer top dog

HMV has issued a profit warning after both the HMV music chain and its Waterstone's bookstores performed poorly over the festive period. Competition from online retailers and grocers able to promote discounted deals has hurt the retailer's profit margins. Looking ahead, this threat is unlikely to diminish as HMV's cut-price rivals continue to up their offer.

Published By Datamonitor
13 Jan 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

Music Zone: in tune with the high street

In an increasingly competitive market, Music Zone's 3.5% rise in like-for-like sales for the five weeks to the beginning of January is impressive when compared to larger rivals HMV and Virgin. The chain's low-cost formula has enabled it to compete with grocery retailers and the business still has room to grow.

Published By Datamonitor
16 Jan 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

WH Smith: making savings but not sales

UK high-street retailer WH Smith reported a 6% fall in underlying sales for the seven weeks to January 21 but improved its margins by 250 basis points. The mixed results are a testament to the company's recovery plan, which has focused on achieving a more profitable product mix. Despite this progress, sales growth remains a challenge.

Published By Datamonitor
25 Jan 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

Home Entertainment: facing tough choices

Home Entertainment, the operator of Choices Video and DVD stores, has been hit by the rise in the number of fake DVDs flooding into the UK, reporting pre-tax losses of GBP3.1 million. Piracy is not the only problem: unless the company responds to increased competition and improves its brand profile, the prospects look relatively bleak.

Published By Datamonitor
25 Jan 2006
Expert View
Expert View

HMV: from market leader to takeover target

HMV has confirmed that it has received a bid approach from private equity firm Permira, after reporting disappointing Christmas sales. The music & video retailer is having to adapt to a sea change in its core market brought on by growing online and mainstream retail sales, and it is unlikely that Permira would make a quick buck from a selling it on.

Published By Datamonitor
31 Jan 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

Waterstone's: time to go it alone?

The sale of Waterstone's by HMV - to its founder or to another party - looks highly probable. While at one time Waterstone's and HMV were both leading players in relatively small retail sectors reinforced by strong links between books, music and video, the synergies have now withered and separation seems to be the best way forward.

Published By Datamonitor
07 Feb 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

Ottakar's: margins under pressure

Ottakar's blamed heavy discounting by rivals as the company slid into a pre-tax loss of GBP4.6 million in 2005, as supermarkets offered heavy discounts on best sellers. The company has suggested better long term prospects, but with grocers gearing up for greater participation, the challenge to established specialists will intensify.

Published By Datamonitor
29 Mar 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

Waterstone's: battle for control

Tim Waterstone has acted on his long-held ambition to reacquire the Waterstone's chain of bookshops he founded, reportedly offering GBP280 million to acquire the business from HMV - with the condition that HMV does not acquire rival bookseller Ottakar's. However, HMV is keen to acquire the chain to reinvigorate its book-selling business.

Published By Datamonitor
25 Apr 2006
Expert View
Expert View

HMV: dancing to a new tune

The music and video retailer has revealed a disappointing sales performance yet again citing the World Cup, the internet and grocers as the cause of its downfall. The company is embarking on a two-year program of initiatives to improve its performance in time for Christmas trading, but HMV still faces serious challenges.

Published By Datamonitor
07 Jul 2006
Expert View
Expert View

Borders: no best sellers, just a performance plan

US bookstore chain Borders reported a net loss of $18.4 million for the second quarter ended July 29. Although the disappointing result reflects tough conditions in the retailer's domestic market, Borders inadequate response to competitive pressures is also a contributory factor.

Published By Datamonitor
24 Aug 2006

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