musica
Musica store in Tyger Valley, Cape Town. Photo: Estrelita Moses
  • South Africa’s largest remaining music retailer is shutting down come end of May.
  • Its stock of DVDs, games and CDs are currently being sold off for cheap. 
  • The move to digital streaming - along with the pandemic - killed off the business. 
  • For more stories, go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.

Musica is selling its stock at large discounts as the Clicks-owned chain prepares to shut its doors permanently at the end of May.

On Saturday, large swathes of its DVD collections were selling for R20 each, with CDs going for the same price.

DVDs and CDs at bargain prices.

There were plenty of gaming specials as well, including Call of Duty Black Ops for under R500, and Call of Duty Modern Warfare for R799.

Games are also on offer at Musica.

Some of the cut-price vinyl records and t-shirts quickly sold out at the Musica Waterfront store.

Cut-price vinyl records were quickly sold out at Musica.
The Musica T-shirt collection - two for R300, as part of the closing-down sale - was sold out at the store that Business Insider visited.

Clicks, which bought Musica in 1992 for R1.2 million, announced this week that it would close all its stores by the end of May.

“Musica has been operating in a declining market for several years owing to the structural shift globally to the digital consumption of music, movies and games from the traditional physical format,” Clicks said in a statement.

“The inevitable demise of the brand has been accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic which resulted in the rapid decline in foot traffic in destination malls where Musica stores are typically located,” the company said.

In its glory days, Musica was the place to get all the latest hits, with music fans spending hours at its listening stations deciding which CD to buy.

By the early 2000s, Musica Megastores - which was launched after Clicks' acquisition of music retailer CD Warehouse in 1997 - sold over 30,000 local and international CD and DVD titles.

But the rise of digital streaming of music, movies, TV and gaming killed the demand for physical CDs and DVDs. Its retail competitor, Look and Listen, closed its last shop in 2017 after fifty years in business.

In recent years, Musica tried to adapt its business by selling more electronic products, as well as headphones and gaming gear.

But it was not enough, and the coronavirus pandemic proved the final death knell. Stores were closed for months as part of the first part of lockdown, and shop visits remained under pressure as consumers stayed out of malls. 

In 2020, before the start of the pandemic, Musica had more than 150 stores, which declined to only 59 by the start of 2021. From June, there will be none.

Additional reporting by Helena Wasserman

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