Entertainment specialist Blockbuster has plunged into administration, making it the third large retailer to hit the buffers in a week following the collapse of Jessops and HMV.

Deloitte has been appointed as administrator to Blockbuster.

The DVD and games rental specialist, headquartered in Uxbridge, has 528 UK stores and employs 4,190 staff.

Deloitte partner and joint administrator Lee Manning said: “In recent years Blockbuster has faced increased competition from internet-based providers along with the shift to digital streaming of movies and games.

“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.”

He maintained: “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.”

A source close to the situation said there are no immediate plans for store closures.

The adminstration follows the collapse of Jessops last week and HMV this week, plunging the entertainment sector into crisis. Play.com revealed last week it is to close down its retail arm in the UK in March.

Blockbuster UK is owned by its US parent Blockbuster Inc, which itself collapsed into administration in 2011 before being acquired by US satelitte TV company Dish Network.