Linklaters takes dual role as HMV enters administration

Linklaters has been instructed by both the administrators and the banks as high street entertainment company HMV enters administration following rejection of a new funding deal.

Chris Howard
Chris Howard

HMV called in Deloitte partners Nick Edwards, Neville Kahn and Rob Harding as administrators late last night (14 January), after the company’s suppliers declined to provide around £300m in financing to pay off bank debt.

Linklaters partners Richard Hodgson and Richard Bussell have been instructed to act for the Deloitte partners, while banking partner Chris Howard is advising HMV’s banks. Howard has been acting for the banks for some time.

Simmons & Simmons corporate head Giles Dennison has been acting for HMV in recent weeks, but a continued role for the firm is uncertain.

Background to this deal:

Linklaters won roles on two of last year’s most high-profile administrations. Howard was instructed jointly with SNR Denton partner Nigel Barnett by PricewaterhouseCoopers when Petroplus Refining & Marketing collapsed a year ago (26 January 2012), while Hodgson – then an associate – was involved in the administration of Game Group alongside partner Bruce Bell later in the year (30 March 2012).

HMW is the second major high street company to go into administration in a week. Last Wednesday (9 January 2012) camera chain Jessops was put into administration. Ashurst and SNR Denton were instructed to act for the company and administrators respectively as Jessops’ shops closed immediately.

Around 4,500 people are employed by HMV. The company’s stores remain open this morning.