GAME eyes up HMV stores

CEO confirms UK retailer is in talks with Deloitte

GAME CEO Martyn Gibbs has confirmed that the retailer is in talks with HMV administrators Deloitte about acquiring some of the the entertainment chain's stores.

"We will constantly review our property portfolio based on what is available," he told The Financial Times, which put the number of stores GAME was interested in at 45. It also reported that these stores were based in locations not currently occupied by GAME.

"I would not rule out any stores becoming available, be that through an administration or normal property deals."

GAME itself was only recently rescued from administration by OpCapita, after closing 277 of its stores. This move could be a way to plug some of the retail gaps left by that time.

Gibbs added that given GAME's direct experience of administration, it was trying to act sensitively.

"We are doing everything we can to act really appropriately."

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Latest comments (16)

Peter Dwyer Games Designer/Developer 9 years ago
OK tell me this is a frikkin joke!

Did the problems of game simply not happen. Especially the one where they gave up their flagship store (a move I'm sure they now regret) in Oxford Street because of cost!
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Andrew Animator 9 years ago
Could you even fill a hmv with games?
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Game should save for a rainy day...
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Show all comments (16)
Jamie Read 3D Artist, Neon Play Ltd9 years ago
I do wander how the people who make these decisions have managed to get to such a high position? *rhyme not intended*

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Jamie Read on 18th January 2013 9:45am

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John Bye Lead Designer, Freejam9 years ago
At this point, I'm pretty sure that almost anybody who posts comments on this site could do a better job of running Game than the current or recent management. People have been suggesting sensible ways of turning the business around and making it relevant in a changing market for years now, and yet the current owners seem happy to blindly run it into the ground (again) instead of making real changes to their business model.

Who are these people, and how do I get their jobs?
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Matthew Hill Head of Recruitment, Specialmove9 years ago
What about all the empty COMET stores ? OH....

On a serious note this seems a major gamble and should only be considered if the costs are minimal and it gives GAME presence in strong locations. I also suspect most HMV stores are too large

Nevertheless on a positive note, some additional jobs could be created from this
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They would make nice Samsung kool aid stores alternatively
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Ben Gonshaw Game Design Consultant, AKQA9 years ago
Thinking about this I can only see two possibilities.

They have some kind of brave out-of-home experience planned in these big spaces. Comfy sofas, fantastic coffee roasted in-house, artisan nibbles and beers mico-brewed on site. Sit back on comfy sofas and sample pre-release indie games on consoles you don't own (Wii U, Gen 8?), all aimed squarely at the 32+ majority demographic. In the back, exclusive booths fitted out with expensive rigs, 150inch behemoth TV's and monster sound systems for the latest blockbusters and pre-release exclusives. Putting a games twist on Nike's future-of-retail approach at places like Box Park.

Or perhaps they just have a kind streak: consolidating out of sympathy for the complicated work that liquidators do, so they can have an easier time winding up all the Game and HMV assets in one go.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Ben Gonshaw on 18th January 2013 1:42pm

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Nick Parker Consultant 9 years ago
Any specialist on the high street is going to have to diversify its product range and in-store offering. Matthew is right about the size of HMV stores and Ben is not far off regarding a chill out experience. Apple Store is a destination store, even if you don't want to buy anything. Maybe Game is thinking of piloting a new larger environment for consumers to experience new technologies related or loosely associated to games. It would be a gamble but one or two in prime locations may just work.
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Andrew Animator 9 years ago
It would be a gamble but one or two in prime locations may just work.
Inevitably though, it would be 2 or 3 in every major city and town, and it would end up cannibalising itself.
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Thomas Dolby Project Manager / Lead Programmer, Ai Solve9 years ago
They better have a good plan for this, something amazing, otherwise this just looks like an alcoholic who just had his life saved by a stomach pump reaching for another bottle of whiskey.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Thomas Dolby on 18th January 2013 4:53pm

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Adam Campbell Product Manager, Azoomee9 years ago
Thank you Peter :p
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Well, the one kind of thing that would work is competitive e sport

That could catch on in UK
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Sean Ferrol Podcast Host & Creator, Next Level Cast9 years ago
Bias aside, there are small HMV stores, there was one in my town that wasn't much bigger than my GAME store (though it got shut down after Christmas 2011/Early 2012 and a clothes store moved in).

I'd imagine that there's quite a few smaller HMV stores that fit in to shopping centres that GAME no longer have a presence in.
Whether it's worth the money is another thing entirely though.
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Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game9 years ago
Is this to make it look as if they are doing better than they are? Or an anti-competition thing?
I'd echo the sentiment that too many store is what caused Game's problems in the first place, and it seems there are rumours circulating around Game staff that all is not rosy now.
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Andreia Quinta Photographer 9 years ago
It also reported that these stores were based in locations not currently occupied by GAME
Hm, like say, Oxford street for example? Closing down one of their most profitable and well located stores due to rent issues. It would be entertaining to see them buy off HMV Oxford St and see them go down the way of the Dodo again.
But like Nicholas said, they might have a completely different idea on how to approach retail, and that's how retail should be approached these days.
We need to make stores an experience rather than a Tesco visit, focus on sales only and you'll wither away eventually. Currently the consumer can get everything purchasable on an online platform like Amazon, it's not that far-fetched to realize brick and mortar shops need to offer something online retailers can't.

I would love to be able to go to a video-game shop to sit down somewhere and just relax, pick up a game-based comic novel, or a game guide and flip it open to check out stuff, and get enticed by a game franchise by flipping a comic or a book about it. Yet currently what they do is close any books and guides with security stickers so people won't open them.
I'd love to check out a video-game store with an actual amazing display with gaming hero statues (Hello Lara Croft) and fully open and displayed collectors editions as well as some vintage mint condition consoles like Atari and SNES. All of it on cabinets for me to drool upon and get inside that shop, because the awesomeness was just to high to ignore. Unfortunately all we get is posters with the next big 'whatever' releases.

What happened to those retail stores that actually loved what they sold and were attended by people that really knew about and adored what they were selling, displaying the best they had even if it wasn't for sale. That was public service right there, today everything is about getting money out of John Doe.

GAME needs to loose it's hard-on, considering last years situation, I would put money in how turning their stores into an actual enjoyable place isn't on their agenda.
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