GAME acquired by OpCapita; remaining stores to stay open

It's been a bad last few weeks for the GAME Group and its series of gaming retail stores but today there is finally some good news. A few days after the GAME Group went into administration, it's been announced that its remaining assets have been acquired by Baker Acquisitions Limited, a group who has advised by the private investment group OpCapita.

GAME Group, who owned the GAME and Gamestation retail stores in the UK and Ireland, went into administration on March 21, after several months of poor financial results.  On March 27, the administrator, PwC, announced that 277 GAME and Gamestation retail stores would shut down immediately in the UK and Ireland with over 2,000 people losing their jobs as a result.

Today's announcement means that the remaining 333 retail stores will stay open and that nearly 3,200 employees will keep their jobs. In addition, a few GAME Group home office employees who were laid off last week will also be brought back. Specific financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Henry Jackson, the Managing Partner at OpCapita. said:

We are pleased to have reached agreement with the Administrator. We strongly believe there is a place on the high street for a video gaming specialist and GAME is the leading brand in a £2.8 billion market in the UK. We have assembled a strong team of experienced industry operators to implement the programme of operational change that is needed. There is a huge amount to do but we look forward to the challenge of restoring GAME’s fortunes in partnership with its employees and supplier.

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12 Comments

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Since Game and Gamestation are high street stores, it's not always fair to say that they're overpriced. They just have overheads. So many more overheads than online stores. The fact that they're in administration makes it clear that they have too many overheads and need to re-tool.

Game/Gamestation are dinosaurs who think they can dictate prices etc for those in the UK, I think their demise is a good thing, they brought it on themselves, hell even now they are charging £45 for a vita game (Fifa or Uncharted) and charging £40 for a second hand used copy that does not have all the functionality of a new copy.

Pre-owned games has made them greedy and complacent, I for one will not miss them.

hurrah for the staff keeping their jobs, but seriously whos stupid enough to take on Game with their overpriced retail model and outdated retail method. bleurgh cant recall the last time i even went into Game, rather use their sister company, at least their prices are more competitive to the internet/Tesco/Asda and they give a fairer price for trade-ins.
Games a dinosaur and should be extinct by now.

pmdci said,
That's very nice. But what about all the former staff of GAME Ireland, who got their jobs slashed without ANY offer of compensation or redundancy? https://www.facebook.com/GameIrelandFight

What about them ? That's what happens when a company files for administration and have to cut losses. Usually in Europe the government unemployment office will pay a bankruptcy or whatever guarantee. At least here they do. Where if your employeer fires you for bankruptcy, you can get paid or most of your pay from a fund run by them.

We all can agree that lost jobs is bad.

But GAME, along with all other retail chain stores like Gamestop who sell used games, do nothing but hurt the gaming industry.

They either need to be shutdown or we need used game sales to stop. Hopefully the rumors about one of the next gen consoles not allowing used games to be played turns out to be true, as that's one big step in the right direction. Despite all the controversy about it, it will be better for the gaming industry in the end.

DAOWAce said,
We all can agree that lost jobs is bad.

But GAME, along with all other retail chain stores like Gamestop who sell used games, do nothing but hurt the gaming industry.

They either need to be shutdown or we need used game sales to stop. Hopefully the rumors about one of the next gen consoles not allowing used games to be played turns out to be true, as that's one big step in the right direction. Despite all the controversy about it, it will be better for the gaming industry in the end.

Time to ban eBay and Amazon Marketplace also??

The administration damaged them beyond repair. This is just a stay of execution really. They only proved one thing and that is developers don't need them. Sales off mass effect 3 weren't affected so they have proven themselves obsolete. Couple that with the terms and conditions in the admiistration (loyalty points and gift cards bing invalid) even for a short period and consumer confidence will be at an all time low.

Even with OpCapita behind them Amazon is still by far the safer and cheaper option for me.

Noveed said,
This is good news for those who were facing potential redundancy. I wish them all the best.

This is bad news for those Steam users still suffering from the blackmail GAME would pummel game developers with to keep their games off the UK Steam store.

funkydude said,

This is bad news for those Steam users still suffering from the blackmail GAME would pummel game developers with to keep their games off the UK Steam store.

Because the jobs and livelihoods of the steam users is at risk because of this I suppose?

People just want to see Game die for whatever reasons. But the people loosing their jobs and a big number like 3200 in times like this is a dreadful thing regardless of what people think of Game, the main thing is the jobs are safe for now and that is a definite good thing.

Noveed said,

Because the jobs and livelihoods of the steam users is at risk because of this I suppose?

People just want to see Game die for whatever reasons. But the people loosing their jobs and a big number like 3200 in times like this is a dreadful thing regardless of what people think of Game, the main thing is the jobs are safe for now and that is a definite good thing.

No, but like he said Game bullied developers into keeping their games off Steam. Not only do gamers lose out, but the developers don't get the extra sales from steam. While it might only seem like a small team of 10-20 developers at times for smaller development companies vs the 3,200 jobs Game stores provide... the bigger picture means that the Developers lose their jobs, there are no games being developed to put in the Game stores for gamers to buy (or via steam). So the Game store won't have games to sell again (remember this is one of the big reasons why they've gone into administration).

So yeah, not letting developers expand into steam not seem like its a risk to anyone but when it comes full circle, everyone loses out.