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All GameStop stores to open on Thanksgiving

Troubled games retailer aims to maximise sales opportunities around crucial holiday period

GameStop will reportedly open every brand on Thanksgiving Day "to better serve our guests with their evolving holiday shopping needs."

The news first emerged from Kotaku after two employees told the site about conference calls that detailed the plans. Some of the retailer's staff are upset by the decision - particularly given that it's only been three years since GameStop revealed it would close all store on Thanksgiving "out of respect" for its workers and their families.

A subsequent GameStop statement assured the site that stores will only open "for a shortened and limited time" on the day itself, adding: "Many of our store associates and guests have asked for this. We have heard their requests and are making an adjustment to our previous position on this topic."

Thanksgiving is a crucial period for US retailers, representing a massive consumer spending rush before Christmas - albeit most of which is concentrated on Black Friday, the day after. That said, Adobe reports that just under $2bn was spent on Thanksgiving Day via mobile retail apps and sites last year, and GameStop no doubt want to benefit for additional in-store sales as well.

GameStop had a difficult couple of years. The previous financial year ended with revenues down by 8% and net profits down by 12%, despite the retailer hoping for increases in both. The decline suffered in Q4, encompassing Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Christmas, was particularly rough and prompted plans to close 150 stores across the US.

Even the success of the Nintendo Switch and a boost in interest for Pokémon merchandise failed to prevent profits from falling in the following quarter. As recently as E3, the retailer's shares took a hit as investors were unimpressed by this year's line-up.

Given such a tumultuous year, it's perhaps understandable that GameStop is seizing every opportunity to improve its video games sales in the run-up to Christmas, particularly with the Xbox One X arriving at the start of November and an expected rise in Switch stock to prepare for the console's important first Christmas.

It's also understandable that staff will be unhappy about working even limited hours on what is an important holiday for US citizens. The news follows controversy earlier this year, where GameStop's new 'Circle of Life' policies reportedly compelled employees to deliberately mislead customers.

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James Batchelor


James Batchelor is Editor-in-Chief at He has been a B2B journalist since 2006, and an author since he knew what one was