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Supermarket weeps as Tesco’s Blinkbox losses hit £40m

A run of bad news from the aisles at Tesco has continued with the retailer reportedly confirming that it lost a total £40m last year on its failed Blinkbox entertainment venture, after selling the ill-fated business for a fraction of the sums it had spent building it up.

Accounts filed for the film and music streaming services showed that Blinkbox Music pre-tax losses nearly tripled in a year from £4.6m in 2013 to £12.5m in 2014 whilst Blinkbox Entertainment was in the red to the tune of £29.5m last year.

In order to stem further losses Tesco’s newly installed chief Dave Lewis offloaded both services last September, selling the music portion of the business to TalkTalk for £5m and the entertainment division to streaming specialist Guvera for £5m.

Blinkbox Books meanwhile will be closed down after no buyer could be found.

Tesco had been fighting a losing battle to keep both services afloat after Blinkbox Music sales nosedived to just £150,000 in the year ended 28 February, down from £292,000 the year before. Losses at Blinkbox Entertainment meanwhile were racked up after Tesco was unable to recoup the sums it invested in securing content rights.

Investors hope that Tesco can now focus its energies on its core grocery business which has struggled in the face of mounting pressure from discount retailers Aldi and Lidl.

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