The U.K. version of the Blockbuster chain is once again in danger of shutting down completely as the brand once again enters administration.
Administration, the U.K. version of Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, is not a fun place for any company to be, and Blockbuster is once again preparing to enter it. Having been saved earlier this year by Gordon Brothers, the rental chain is facing declining sales once again, and the efforts made by its new owners have not been enough to salvage what was left of the company. “Regrettably, the months since the acquisition have also coincided with a period of poor trading performance across both rental and retail sales,” the company said in a statement. It also added that 32 employees have already been let go from the corporate offices.
At the time of the purchase by Gordon Brothers, Blockbuster U.K. still had 264 stores and over 2,000 employees. There is no indication as of yet if any of these will be able to remain open once an administrator is appointed, but all of the locations will remain operational at this time.
Part of the problems since the takeover by Gordon Brothers appears to have stemmed from the inability for the U.K. arm to reach a licensing deal with the U.S. division over launching an online streaming service. While the two companies share a name, they are actually completely separate, and it is doubtful if the original licensing agreement for the brand name included any provisions for online streaming as it did not exist at that time.