News Article

GAME Enters Administration, Closes 277 Stores

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Over 2,000 jobs lost

GAME Group plc. has entered administration.

The retailer filed for administration last week but, having been unable to find a buyer over the weekend, was officially placed into administration yesterday morning.

Administrators PwC made an immediate impact on reducing the company's store portfolio, closing 277 stores with the loss of over 2,000 jobs in one day. MCV has the full list of closed stores. Its online stores have ceased trading, and customers currently cannot spend their accrued loyalty points or any value on a trade-in card. Hardware trade-ins, trading games for cash and refunds are also all suspended while the company is in administration.

The retailer is still on borrowed time: if it can't find a suitable buyer within the coming days and weeks it could see further store closures and redundancies.

The first signs that GAME Group was in trouble came last month when its Christmas sales reports showed lower than expected profits, resulting in a decreased credit facility with its banks. This meant the chain had to purchase stock up-front with cash instead of relying on traditional credit agreements, vastly limiting its ability to stock new games: indeed, GAME and gamestation stores haven't stocked a Nintendo-published game in months.

Our most sincere best wishes to everyone who's been affected by the store closures. Here's hoping you all get a 1-up soon.

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User Comments (27)

Shining-Void

#2

Shining-Void said:

I hope all those people can find new jobs, because as far as I can tell being unemployed sucks.

James

#3

James said:

@gusmento01 No, they have stores in Australia and Spain as I recall, but the closures are only in the UK and Ireland.

3dbrains

#4

3dbrains said:

One year ago Game and Gamestation were selling the 3DS at £230 when every single other retailer was selling it for £190.
One year ago I told them "by ripping off customers like this you are pushing them away and they will buy from other stores." "You sell games and only games... so why are your games more expensive than anywhere else on the highstreet?"

I hate to say "I told you so" but I am sick of being ripped off by this company so I exclaim a proud and big headed "I told you so!"

James

#5

James said:

@3dbrains 2,000 men and women just lost their jobs and livelihoods. Have some class.

If Tesco sells the 3DS for £197, it can make up the shortfall on other products that people need: toilet roll, beans, bread, milk etc.

As you astutely point out, GAME and Gamestation only sell games, therefore they need to make money on games. That's why they have to sell products priced for profit: that's their business.

You make it sound like they were selling the 3DS for mountains of profit when really they made less than £5 profit from the sale of a new 3DS.

Boshi

#6

Boshi said:

It's a huge shame, I used to go there a lot (always have and still want to get games from game shops). Although GAME did expand probably too much taking over Gamestation (that was also a bad day for different reasons as Gamestation completely stopped selling retro games and consoles with all stock destroyed if I remember correctly) and also took over all EB stores. Good luck too all the employees.

James

#7

James said:

@Boshi The retro write-off came later and wasn't all retro stock — there was a long list of games that weren't destroyed. Most of the destroyed stock was old sports games, though some good stuff probably didn't make the cut :(

Aviator

#8

Aviator said:

It's such a shame to see GAME the way it is at the moment. I love my local store, the staff are a friendly bunch. Hopefully, this is a representation of the staff at UK GAME. Hopefully someone will help GAME get back on their feet soon, especially to help those 2,000+ employees.

Best of luck to all those affected by this whole situation.

Gavin_Rozee

#9

Gavin_Rozee said:

Sorry about the jobs, not sorry about the company. Game.co.uk were pretty good, and I almost always got my orders a day early, but I'd rather be torn apart by a bull than buy games in the stores.

Wheels2050

#10

Wheels2050 said:

I'm sympathetic for the employees - let's hope they can find work quickly. I see other stores going in a similar direction though, especially in Australia. The traditional retail model simply can't hold up to the cheaper online stores, and so chains like EB Games and GAME (who I believe operate independently of the UK branches) will have to adapt or be rendered irrelevant.

Also, I hold no value in going to those game stores any more. I used to shop at local computer game stores (i.e. not branches) which I enjoyed, but I find that the big chain stores are not really worth my time. The games are never 'new' (if not played, they have at least been taken out of their shrink wrap), the prices are way too high and can't really ever recall coming across any exceptional customer service.

When there are cheaper and arguably better services available online, many people (myself included) are going to make that their first stop.

AndyCarolan

#11

AndyCarolan said:

Very sad indeed :(

The staff in my local branches of Game and Gamestation were among the most friendly, helpful and knowledgeable of ANY store I have visited. I actually felt like my purchase meant something to the store. As I've said before however, the pricing difference between Game and other retailers (and indeed Game's own web store) may have been a big reason for consumers shopping elsewhere.

Whatever the reason, I wish the staff and all concerned at Game the very best outcome in this terrible situation.

warioswoods

#12

warioswoods said:

Huh, you learn something new every day. I'd never heard this "administration" term used in that fashion, but evidently it's akin to what we call the bankruptcy process in the US.

sikthvash

#13

sikthvash said:

Sad news for employees and customers of Game... I hope they will find a way back in to the online retail at the very least but the gaming industry really needs a presence on the high street to push sales of consoles and top IPs from publishers / developers. Our Isle of Man store is still open for business but I fear the worst... I'm glad I have Shopto to rely on but I will miss browsing & picking up in store exclusive bargains and seraching for decent second hand games

OorWullie

#14

OorWullie said:

What is happening to the UK,Rangers,Portsmouth and now Game and all the rest that have fallen before them?I know the first 2 was down to severe mismanagement at the top but I would assume Game' downfall is just down to a sign of the economic times.I would like to think they will turn it around but from my last trip back home to Scotland and seeing our abandoned high streets (at Xmas time too) I don't hold much hope for them.Good luck guys!

japzone

#15

japzone said:

I feel deep sympathy for the employees that were cut.

It'd odd how game retailers in the UK are having these problems, but in the US/CA GameStop/EBgames has been doing quite well. I have been buying more Indie games recently but I still get my retail games from GameStop/EBgames. I often Pre-Order and the info the Staff knows is very good, often having played most of the games themselves. All in all GameStop is still the best buying expirience I've had. BestBuy has nice people but they don't know the games as well as GameStop/EBgames employees do.

FonistofCruxis

#17

FonistofCruxis said:

It looks like my closest GAME and Gamestations are still up but that may not be for too much longer but this is sad news for all the people who lost their jobs.

Victoria

#19

Victoria said:

How sad :( I went there at the weekend to spend the last of my credit voucher and cashed in my loyality points. I figured it was coming, but even then it was quicker than I thought it would be.

Henmii

#20

Henmii said:

"Closes 277 Stores"

No surprise here. We all saw it coming.

If you not even stock great first party titles (like Marioparty 9. No matter what you think about it, it's a Mario game. And Mario games always sell!) then it's game over for your company!

Tasuki

#21

Tasuki said:

I hate to see a company shutting down stores no matter how bad the company is run. My sympathies to all the families affected by the lost of these jobs.

Vincent294

#22

Vincent294 said:

Too bad. I was hoping GameStop would buy them out. This is a shame. May another game company re-hire their employees.

TheRegginator

#23

TheRegginator said:

While I feel bad for the people that lost their jobs, the retail chain had it coming. It was just full of poor economic decisions. I surprised that GameStop hasn't capitalized on this and bought GAME yet.

JimLad

#25

JimLad said:

It is a shame to see GAME, GameStation, Electronics Boutique, and GamePlay all taken out in one fell swoop.
So what is the future for video game retail in the UK? Are there any specialists left on the highstreet now?
Will GameStop move in? :/

Vincent294

#27

Vincent294 said:

Hopefully Game Stop swoops in and re-hires everyone. After all, they never bought them out.

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