Back in March, the company only expected to close 300 stores this year, and more closures are expected in 2021.
Retail is suffering badly due to the coronavirus pandemic, and GameStop is having to react by confirming it’s going to close even more stores than it planned this year.
Last year, the games retailer closed 321 stores classed as “underperforming” by CFO James Bell. It followed tumbling hardware and software sales by the company, and that was before anyone had heard the word “COVID-19.” Then in March, 300 more store closures were announced in what Bell classed as continuing to “de-densify our global store fleet.” It seems, 300 isn’t enough anymore, though.
As CNN reports, GameStop’s second quarter revenue came in below analysts’ expectations even though online sales increased by 800 percent. The company’s reaction to this is to increase the number of store closures happening this year from 300 to 400-450 globally. Bell also said in an earnings call this week that there’s “more to do,” which means more store closures will be happening in 2021. We don’t know how many yet, though. For now, GameStop continues to operate 5,122 retail stores worldwide.
Video games retailers have been placed in an increasingly difficult situation for years now due mainly to the growing popularity of digital games sales. As Statista reports, digital sales have grown from just 20 percent in 2009 to 83 percent in 2018. The pandemic has closed retail stores and pushed even more people to buy online, so the outlook for game retail stores certainly doesn’t look healthy going forward, even if we are about to get a new generation of hardware.
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