– By Becky Williams
Retail company HMV has fallen into administration and left many customers stranded with unwanted gift vouchers adding up to over £100m of wasted money.
Purchased before most people knew of the companies struggles, some are saying they feel angry and ‘cheated out of their money’ with some even going as far as to call it theft.
Senior Tory backbench MP, Sir Tony Baldry has accused the company of stealing money from its clients when they must have been aware “there was little prospect of those vouchers or gift cards ever being redeemed.”
He said: “Directors and management must have known that the company was at very real risk of failure” but they still continued to sell gift vouchers “all through Christmas and up until the day they went into administration”.
Social Media has been one of the key platforms consumers are using to discuss the announcement, and to direct anger at the company.
A selection of Facebook comments and Tweets are displayed below.
“You disgust me HMV. You have stolen money from people!!!”
“I work for HMV, I have a £50 voucher and my colleague has a £100 voucher. We clearly had no idea about this. On reflection though, we are barely thinking about our voucher, it’s the job we want.”
“For all the people on here with vouchers to spend, please spare a thought for the frontline staff at HMV. They didn’t make the decision not to accept the vouchers, and whilst you may be out of pocket, they’re probably more concerned with whether they will be able to afford to pay rent, mortgages and bills over the coming months.”
“You have stolen £20 from my 14-year-old son!”
“I know an easy solution would’ve been don’t sell vouchers up to Monday night knowing there were problems and then people wouldn’t be so upset but I agree people shouldn’t be upset with the staff. That isn’t fair.”
“Really upset #HMV is going…. Such a shame… x”
“to be honest, #HMV shouldn’t be disrespected because administrators reject gift vouchers…”
“I agree, the staff shouldn’t receive any abuse, but I think stealing from #hmv is morally acceptable if you’ve got vouchers for them.
“No wonder #HMV is bust, I look on Amazon at some CDs I’ve been trying to find in hmv stores for ages and they’re 1p (with £1 delivery but wow)”
Avalanche in Edinburgh has also suggested it may to be near complete closure, as well as Aberdeen’s last independent music store – One Up – and Blockbuster. The high street is slowly running out of music stores which could force more people to buy and download online.