Music retailing woes spread as Pinnacle collapses

As you’ll know unless you’ve lately been orbiting Saturn, Woolies went into administration a week ago, taking the distributor Entertainment UK with it.  

The knock-on effect on the high street went well beyond Woolworths.  Zavvi, formerly Virgin Megastores, was reportedly unable to stock new albums by Britney Spears and Take That on their Monday release date as a direct result, and a statement on their website today says Entertainment UK’s demise has “made it very difficult for us to secure availability of products”, as the distributor was Zavvi’s main source of music, DVDs and games.

Heading into the main Christmas shopping period, that would be bad enough for the UK music industry.

But now one of the largest indie distributors in the UK, Pinnacle Entertainment, has also gone into administration, with the loss of 94 jobs.  Pinnacle’s warehouse will hold stock from indie labels who can ill afford their CDs to be out of the retail loop even in the best of times, let alone in the run up to Christmas, against a backdrop of digital downloading and economic malaise.

This failure could also affect WHSmith and HMV, who rely on Pinnacle for their supplies from indie labels including Bella Union, Dramatico, One Little Indian, FatCat and Lex.  

The Association of Independent Music (AIM) is holding an emergency meeting today about it all.  

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