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Hilco buys HMV debt

A GOOD DEAL ON SOME BRICK & MORTAR: Hilco Consumer Capital, a private equity firm that specializes in restructuring, has bought the debt of British music retail chain HMV, three sources told the N.Y. Times. The debt deal gives Hilco effective control over HMV, which entered into administration (the U.K. equivalent of Chapter 11) last week. HMV had outstanding debt of $279 million on Oct. 27, according to the latest figures available, although Hilco is believed to have paid around $190 million to purchase the debt from a consortium led by Royal Bank of Scotland and the Lloyds Banking Group, the sources said. The firm, which bought the assets of Polaroid for $85.9 million in 2009, picked picked up HMV's Canadian operations in 2011 for $3.3 million, and already has relationships with many of HMV's suppliers. Hilco is expected to decide within the next month about the future of HMV's 240 stores across Britain, Ireland, Singapore and Hong Kong. The British division of Blockbuster also entered administration last week. (1/22a)

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