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Real Groovy Auckland Back in Business

Media Release:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Thurs 4 December 2008

Real Groovy Auckland Back in Business

Chris Hart, the founder of Real Groovy, announced today (Friday 05 December 08) that the Auckland business he started 27 years ago has been saved from receivership and will continue to operate under the name, Real Groovy. He and his fellow partners in a new company, Fonografo Limited have bought the stock and assets of the Auckland store from the receivers. Fonografo is owned by Chris Hart, fellow Real Groovy executive director, Marty O’Donnell and new investor, Ralph Brayham.

“Marty and I are both relieved and excited,” said Chris Hart. “Real Groovy is going to be able to continue providing a service that Aucklanders want – a cool place for people to trade their CDs, LPs, DVDs and games.”

“And we’re so grateful for the fantastic support we’ve had from customers and especially our Real Groovy Club members,” he added. “We’re now working flat out to re-stock shelves, to get our selection back up to the levels that we are renowned for.”  In an email to customers he’s told them Real Groovy is back, trading discs and redeeming credit notes and vouchers.

Real Groovy went into voluntary receivership in October. The Real Groovy stores in Christchurch and Wellington have already been sold as going concerns, but the Dunedin store has closed. “We’re really pleased that the Christchurch store, which we opened in 2004, has been bought by the store manager, Paul Huggins and the Wellington store, opened in 1999, has been bought by its manager, Mark Thomas,” said Hart.

Real Groovy occupies a unique position in the retail market. Unlike most other music retailers, the sale of new CDs accounts for less than a third of Real Groovy’s revenue. The core of Real Groovy’s business is people trading their old discs. And vinyl is undergoing a strong renaissance among music enthusiasts, according to Hart, due to its superior audio quality.

No other music retailer carries the volume that Real Groovy does – around 35,000 titles in store and, on the website, around 900,000 CDs, 20,000 DVDs and a million books.  Add the clothing and merchandise range to that and Real Groovy is a unique business, with the online side, in particular, growing rapidly.

The Auckland store has remained very busy throughout the receivership period. “Well we have the deepest music and movie catalogue in the country,” says Hart. “And an incredibly knowledgeable and experienced staff. People who are serious about music and movies tend to come to us. So it’s great for everybody that we’re staying.”



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