Comet, one of Britain’s more iconic electronics stores, is set to shut up shop for good from tomorrow, with the 50 per cent – off everything bar high end electronics – sale that ran over the weekend continuing throughout the day.
Like HMV’s financial troubles that we reported on earlier today, Comet has been in business a long long time, beginning in 1933. While this doesn’t mean much to the majority of shoppers out there, it shows just what a heritage is being lost by the ending of such a business.
Perhaps less sad and more irritating, is that the owners of the company that purchased Comet back at the end of 2011 for just £2, OpCapita – the firm that also bought out the beleaguered GAME – will still be netting tens of millions of pounds from its investment, despite Comet’s collapse. Despite this, creditors of the company won’t receive anything and neither will the government, including £50 million in unpaid taxes.
The statement from the company reads (via ManagementToday): “We are sorry for all the Comet employees who have served the business and customers with great loyalty and have lost their jobs at such a difficult time. OpCapita installed a new management team led by John Clare, who did their utmost to revive the loss-making Comet business, but a combination of adverse factors, including the withdrawal of credit insurance and the consequent reluctance of suppliers to supply the business on normal terms meant it became impossible for the business to carry on trading.”
If you’re planning to check out the sale, make sure you confirm your local Comet is still open, as many have closed already. The full list of still open stores is here.
KitGuru Says: While with the lack of high street electronic retail business – unless you’re an Apple user – the loss of Comet is somewhat understandable, it’s still a shame. However, the question now remains, will OpCapita end up doing the same with GAME?