By Marcus Leach

Blockbuster have joined the ever-growing list of high street casualties, as they become the latest company to enter administration.

Before the dust had even settled on HMV, the DVD rental firm has called in Deloitte after hitting hard times.

The chain has 528 stores employing 4,190 staff, all of who are now in danger of losing their jobs, although for now they will continue to operate in the hope that Deloitte can find a buyer for the troubled firm.

Deloitte, the accountancy firm that will now take over the day-to-day running of the firm, said Blockbuster had been affected by competition from internet-based film services.

Blockbuster follows hard on the heels of music and DVD chain HMV, which formally went into administration earlier this week. It is not yet known what will happen to HMV's branches and 4,500 staff.

Camera-seller Jessops went into administration earlier in the month, and - unusually - all of its branches closed shortly afterwards. Electrical chain Comet collapsed before Christmas.

"We are working closely with suppliers and employees to ensure the business has the best possible platform to secure a sale, preserve jobs and generate as much value as possible for all creditors," said Lee Manning from Deloitte's Restructuring Services practice.

"The core of the business is still profitable and we will continue to trade as normal in both retail and rental whilst we seek a buyer for all or parts of the business as a going concern.

"During this time gift cards and credit acquired through Blockbuster's trade-in scheme will be honoured towards the purchase of goods."

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