HMV boss is first victim of internet price war
Alan Giles handed in his notice after unveiling the worst Christmas trading figures of any big UK retailer so far, particularly at the HMV chain. He said there had been "a quantum jump" in online sales in recent months, while the supermarkets - especially Tesco and Asda - had once again turned the screw on price. The rise in popularity of music downloads has also undermined the traditional high-street music retail business.
Mr Giles, a music fan whose tastes range from Cream to Kasabian, initially dismissed downloading as posing little threat to his business. When the pirate site Napster emerged the HMV chief executive insisted it was not a lot different from teenagers borrowing albums to tape in the 70s. It would, he said, give them a love of music which would ultimately translate into higher CD sales.
"A year ago I was saying the internet would plateau at about 10% of this market," he admitted yesterday. "Now I say that I was wrong. I just don't know now how far it will go. This is a brave new world for retailers." He said he wanted a career change and did not intend to take another full-time job.
From today's Guardian
Pliable says - I wonder what the 'victim's' pay-off will be?
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