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Best Buy to close all UK stores

Retailer "confident" it can redeploy "large majority" of staff

Best Buy is set to close all eleven of its UK stores, after failing to make a profit in Britain since the first opening almost 18 months ago.

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The first Best Buy UK store opened in May 2010 in Thurrock, Essex, breaking its own sales record on the first day of opening. Since then the chain has opened stores in locations including Bristol, Hayes and Nottingham.

The stores, which are part of a joint venture between Carphone Warehouse in the UK and the US electronics giant Best Buy, made losses before tax of £46.7m in the half-year to September 30.

The UK closures are expected by the end of the year, subject to consultations with employees.

Andrew Harrison, CEO of Best Buy Europe, said: "After conducting a thorough strategic review of our operations, we believe that our capital investment and 'connectivity' strategy should be prioritised within our Carphone Warehouse stores as they offer a higher and proven rate of return.

"The technology world has changed substantially since 2008 and we are confident we will best serve our customers by investing in a single brand and format rather than two."

[ SOURCE: Internet Retailing ]

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