Things were looking bleak for GAME as it entered administration last week. The UK company hadn’t managed to survive a tough holiday season in 2011, and pleas to negotiate better deals with the gaming studios fell on deaf ears. It announced that it would be halting all pre-orders, as well as suspending the Reward points system, much to customers dissatisfaction. 277 stores were closed and 2,104 jobs were lost as a result of the administration process. Over the weekend, OpCapita swooped in and bought the remaining stores that were still open.
[Image credit: Wikipedia]
The administrators of GAME sold the remaining 333 of UK stores to OpCapita, although financial details of the sale were not disclosed. The sale secures the jobs of over 3,200 GAME employees, and certain roles at the head office that were previously made redundant could be re-employed.
Henry Jackson, managing partner at OpCapita, said of the sale: “We strongly believe there is a place on the high street for a video gaming specialist and Game is the leading brand in a £2.8bn market in the UK.” It’s believed that upfront costs for GAME will be small, with OpCapita instead taking on the large amount of debt.
Dr Richard Wilson, CEO of games industry group TIGA, believes the deal will give GAME “breathing space.” Having suffered from “the shift from physical to digital games”, Wilson believes that GAME must “develop a digital strategy” in order to have a fighting chance in the market.