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Retailer Virgin France calls it quits

Jan. 5, 2013 at 12:46 PM

PARIS, Jan. 5 (UPI) -- Music retail chain Virgin France said it was closing 25 stores in France and eliminating 1,000 jobs.

The company -- once owned by Richard Branson's Virgin Group, which operates Virgin Atlantic Airways -- has declared itself insolvent, the British Broadcasting Corp. reported Saturday.

Branson sold the brand to Lagardere in 2001 and Lagardere then sold 80 percent of the company to Butler Capital in 2007.

Virgin France is the latest in a succession of music retailers that have closed in recent years, squeezed out by competition from Internet downloading services and discount outlets and supermarkets that now sell CDs.

Increased piracy of intellectual property has also hurt the business, the BBC said.

Tower Records, Our Price, Music Zone and Borders are among the music retailers that have gone under in recent years.

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