Entertainment retailer HMV has blamed a weak games market in part for a decline in sales for the period ended September 4.
Sales were down in the UK and Ireland by 14.9 per cent on a like-for-like basis, but chief exec Simon Fox singled out a strong product line-up of games as a positive for the coming Christmas period.
"As was highlighted with the group's preliminary results on 30 June 2010, trading during the first quarter of the new financial year has been difficult, particularly in HMV UK & Ireland, where the World Cup disrupted the pipeline for new entertainment product, and the games market continued to be weak," said Fox.
"In line with our new strategic plan, over the summer we progressed the changes to our stores that will enable us to drive our new fashion and enhanced technology offers. These initiatives, combined with a stronger product line-up, particularly in games, are key to the delivery of a successful Christmas," he said.
The company added its market share of the games sector was "satisfactory."
HMV also announced that 14-year veteran Neil Bright, group finance director, will leave the business in December.