STAFF at the collapsed music and entertainment retail chain HMV used the company’s official Twitter account to announce their own “mass execution” as administrators axed nearly 190 jobs.
Users of the social media network were treated to a series of tweets from disgruntled staff, who spoke of loyal workers being laid off.
Bosses finally regained control of the account and the offending tweets were deleted - but not before they had been copied and retweeted.
The first indication that something was amiss came yesterday afternoon with a tweet that said: “We’re tweeting live from HR where we’re all being fired! Exciting!!”
The next message from the official Twitter feed read: “There are over 60 of us being fired at once! Mass execution, of loyal employees who love the brand.”
A minute later one of the employees, whose job it was to tweet about special offers and events at the nationwide chain of music stores, wrote: “Sorry we’ve been quiet for so long. Under contract, we’ve been unable to say a word, or – more importantly – tell the truth.”
The next tweet said: “Just overheard our managing director (he’s staying, folks) ask “How do I shut down Twitter.”
Then 15 minutes later, all the offending tweets were removed. Shortly afterwards, administrators Deloitte put out a statement confirming the job losses.
The administrators, who were appointed on 15 January, are working on a rescue deal for the company ,which has 223 stores and more than 4,000 employees.
A spokesman for Deloitte said: “The joint administrators of HMV today confirm that 190 redundancies have been made across the companies’ head office and distribution network. There have been no redundancies across the retail network with all stores remaining open and continuing to trade.”
Nick Edwards, joint administrator said: “Since our appointment over two weeks ago, we have been assessing the financial position of HMV. Following this review, a number of redundancies at the head office and distribution centres have been made. “Although such decisions are always difficult, it is a necessary step in restructuring the business to enhance the prospects of securing its future as a going concern.”
Hopes of a rescue deal for HMV have been raised after restructuring firm Hilco – the group behind HMV Canada – bought the company’s debt last week.
It is thought that Hilco was planning to begin negotiations this week with suppliers and HMV’s landlords as part of a plan to salvage the group.
Hilco reportedly wants to rescue about half of the stores.