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Comet Teetering On The Brink

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-15650763

Anglo-French electrical goods retailer Kesa has announced plans to sell off its troubled UK-based Comet stores to a private equity firm for just £2.

The buyer is a group of companies under the name "Hailey" advised by retailer turnaround specialists OpCapita.

Kesa said it will itself invest £50m into the new holding company, and will retain liability for the Comet employees' final salary pension scheme.

Kesa said it would benefit from any subsequent onward sale of the chain.

However, it would only do so if the resale price were greater than £70m.

The investment vehicle, under OpCapita's guidance, has also attracted £30m of outside private equity investment and a £40m loan facility.

Responsibility for warranties and servicing will remain with Comet, but a 73m euro (£62m) fund to support these will be transferred by Kesa to the UK company.

The buyers have promised to keep Comet as a going concern for at least 18 months.

Revenues at the loss-making Comet electrical stores fell 22% over the summer, prompting Kesa's chief executive to say that a decision would be made by Christmas about whether to dispose of Comet.

The sale is expected to involve the closure of some of Comet's 250 stores.

The parent company has already confirmed the closure of 17 Comet stores and "right-sizing" of a further nine in the next three years.

How much longer has it got left to go?

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For a moment I thought that YU55 had shifted in its orbit.

Anglo-French electrical goods retailer Kesa has announced plans to sell off its troubled UK-based Comet stores to a private equity firm for just £2.

Personally I'd wait for the January sales to start. Bound to be 50% off all struggling electrical retailers and 4 years interest free (by the public).

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I'll offer them £3. Then pay myself a £1m bonus for organising the takeover sucessfully. Then declare it bankrupt.

Profit!

Edited by RufflesTheGuineaPig

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Crap website IMPO.

I recently bought a washing machine from them and the guys who cam and installed it and the ones I spoke to them on the phone, they were really helpful and friendly and ther machie was good VFM too.

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I recently bought a washing machine from them and the guys who cam and installed it and the ones I spoke to them on the phone, they were really helpful and friendly and ther machie was good VFM too.

That is good to know. Their website is still crap IMPO. My point being that if you have a website that is difficult to navigate or find things on then you lose customers - IMPO the Comet website is difficult to use and find stuff on. It is also not visually appealling to me.

Amazon have the on-line store correct. Amazed more companies do not copy it.

Go and have a look at HMV's website. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh IMPO!

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Don't mind browsing in their stores but can't say I've really used them much. The two most recent episodes I have had with them have not been great!

Ordered three phones from them online and to summarise it, three failed orders, three phone calls, two emails and five DIFFERENT delivery dates later I finally received the items, which were 'in stock' when ordered, twenty five days later.

Previously I had seen a printer on their website which was on a special reduced from £80 to £60, cheaper than most other retailers and the store was five minutes out of my way on the way home. Got to the store and the printer was £80 and I was advised that the price I had seen was a 'web only' special and I would have to pay full price. I had the sales guy query this with a manager but got the same reply, so I left it. I was in their store, stood by the item which I would carry to the till, with the cash in my hand, but they turned it down!Don't mind browsing in their stores but can't say I've really used them much. The two most recent episodes I have had with them have not been great!

Ordered three phones from them online and to summarise it, three failed orders, three phone calls, two emails and five DIFFERENT delivery dates later I finally received the items, which were 'in stock' when ordered, twenty five days later.

Previously I had seen a printer on their website which was on a special reduced from £80 to £60, cheaper than most other retailers and the store was five minutes out of my way on the way home. Got to the store and the printer was £80 and I was advised that the price I had seen was a 'web only' special and I would have to pay full price. I had the sales guy query this with a manager but got the same reply, so I left it. I was in their store, stood by the item which I would carry to the till, with the cash in my hand, but they turned it down!

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Bought for £2 by a group called Hailey.... :lol::lol:

there was a Comet called Hailey Pop.....crashed into Jupiter or Sainsburies or something some years ago.

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Amazon have the on-line store correct. Amazed more companies do not copy it.

Go and have a look at HMV's website. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh IMPO!

Um, kind of. The strangest thing about Amazon's web design is that it really only works for Amazon. Although there are lessons to be learned from the Amazon model, slavishly copying it would probably not work for anyone else.

Here's an old article about their web design from Useit.com: - LINK

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Um, kind of. The strangest thing about Amazon's web design is that it really only works for Amazon. Although there are lessons to be learned from the Amazon model, slavishly copying it would probably not work for anyone else.

Here's an old article about their web design from Useit.com: - LINK

IC...so other firms dont adopt the "show item to customer, customer says yes, customer pays, customer recieves item" model?

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there was a Comet called Hailey Pop.....crashed into Jupiter or Sainsburies or something some years ago.

I'd like it if they were taken over by German electricals retailer, Saturn.

Seriously, Saturn is an amazing shop to visit if you're ever in Germany.

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I recently bought a washing machine from them and the guys who cam and installed it and the ones I spoke to them on the phone, they were really helpful and friendly and ther machie was good VFM too.

I bought my current washing machine from them. First time they tried to deliver it they didn't bring the stair lift/hoist thing for it (it's a Miele and twice as heavy as a normal washer). They didn't bring the lifting gear the second time but the two guys brought it up anyway.

Then they said I didn't have the right connections to plumb it in (newly installed kitchen). My mate ended up connecting it up in under 10 minutes.

The sooner they go bust the better IMO.

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Best Buy is presumably going to have a closing down sale soon, so I guess that won't be good news for the other retailers for this year's Christmas shopping season.

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I recently bought a washing machine from them and the guys who cam and installed it and the ones I spoke to them on the phone, they were really helpful and friendly and ther machie was good VFM too.

And therein lies the problem, they arent charging enough.

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Best Buy is presumably going to have a closing down sale soon, so I guess that won't be good news for the other retailers for this year's Christmas shopping season.

Curry's might be doing a happy dance. Or are they part of the same group?

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Posted that link on one of my Facebook accounts. Got this response from an ex employee!

ha ha I worked for them for 6 years ....they changed thr pay structure so all people over 30 left as they couldn`t afford to live ...the place became run by kids who knew all about laptops i phones etc but ****** all about washing machines fridges dishwashers etc ...Good ridence to bad rubbish i say !!!

British management, don't you just love it.

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Posted that link on one of my Facebook accounts. Got this response from an ex employee!

British management, don't you just love it.

A very British disease, actually this was repeated through retail in the UK for years, Sack the line managers and replace with kids who know diddly squat, didn't work for Safeway or any other company that tried it.

Edited by Hectors House

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I was surprised to see that Best Buy the giant US discount electrics retailer had thrown in the towel after only a few months (and 11 stores) in this country. There again I didn't know about the fact they had already run up tens of millions of losses. Just shows this model doesn't work any more.

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I've bought 2 laptops from Comet and they did us good deals on both. Although my most recent trip to Comet to by a Microwave which they had on the shelf I was told they did not have in stock, but the sales lady said I could try their other Comet shop which was 20 odd miles away but couldn't confirm if it was in stock or not?

Not gonna drive 20 miles to something which may or may not be in stock. How hard would it have been to phone up and check?

Ended up getting it from somewhere else.

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Don't mind browsing in their stores but can't say I've really used them much. The two most recent episodes I have had with them have not been great!

Ordered three phones from them online and to summarise it, three failed orders, three phone calls, two emails and five DIFFERENT delivery dates later I finally received the items, which were 'in stock' when ordered, twenty five days later.

Previously I had seen a printer on their website which was on a special reduced from £80 to £60, cheaper than most other retailers and the store was five minutes out of my way on the way home. Got to the store and the printer was £80 and I was advised that the price I had seen was a 'web only' special and I would have to pay full price. I had the sales guy query this with a manager but got the same reply, so I left it. I was in their store, stood by the item which I would carry to the till, with the cash in my hand, but they turned it down!Don't mind browsing in their stores but can't say I've really used them much. The two most recent episodes I have had with them have not been great!

Ordered three phones from them online and to summarise it, three failed orders, three phone calls, two emails and five DIFFERENT delivery dates later I finally received the items, which were 'in stock' when ordered, twenty five days later.

Previously I had seen a printer on their website which was on a special reduced from £80 to £60, cheaper than most other retailers and the store was five minutes out of my way on the way home. Got to the store and the printer was £80 and I was advised that the price I had seen was a 'web only' special and I would have to pay full price. I had the sales guy query this with a manager but got the same reply, so I left it. I was in their store, stood by the item which I would carry to the till, with the cash in my hand, but they turned it down!

Thought you would have learned your lesson from the first time! :P

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BBC

Anglo-French electrical goods retailer Kesa has announced plans to sell off its troubled UK-based Comet stores to a private equity firm for just £2.

I believe that the standard fee for getting shot of a duff business to PE scavengers has traditionally been £1.

That's inflation for you, I guess.

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