HMV could be thrown a lifeline from an unlikely source: Game. The video games retailer survived administration last year, but is considering buying branches of HMV as the music chain crashes into oblivion.
Game boss Martyn Gibbs says it's interested in buying a selected number of stores, but hasn't confirmed numbers. He probably has two that he wants but doesn't fancy anything for the third.
HMV has around 235 branches. Sources say there are around 40 HMV branches in places where there's no branch of Game, so they could well be targets.
Game isn't the only player interested in HMV. The Financial Times reports there have been as many as 50 expressions of interest in buying the company.
4,000 jobs are at risk if the 91-year-old music and movie chain doesn't make it. Administrators Deloitte were called in at the start of the week, suspending online sales and refusing to accept gift cards -- prompting anger from the many gift card-holding customers left out of pocket. If you do have a gift card, you're at the back of the queue to get your money back from HMV, but if they were bought with a credit or debit card you could get your money back; check out our guide to your legal rights and what you can do.
Game has itself circled the drain in recent times, entering administration last March and closing a whopping 300 stores. The gaming chain was bought by investment firm OpCapita and is now in much better shape; after a better holiday season than expected, it's set to hit this year revenue targets.