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GAME reports record results for 2003, warns of slow start to 2004

Leading videogame retailer GAME Group has announced its financial results for the full year to January 31st, with the company once again outperforming the market and achieving improvements in both turnover and profits.

Leading videogame retailer GAME Group has announced its financial results for the full year to January 31st, with the company once again outperforming the market and achieving improvements in both turnover and profits.

However, the firm warned that sales in the 2004 financial year to date have been slower than last year's, although this is not unexpected; the early months of 2003 were boosted massively by the launch of the GBA SP hardware, so the first quarter of 2004 was always going to be somewhat lacklustre by comparison.

GAME's turnover in the UK and Ireland broke through the half-billion pound mark for the first time last year, while overall group turnover was up 8.3 per cent to £606.7 million, reflecting the continuing growth of the firm's operations on the European mainland.

Pre-tax profits were up 4.5 per cent to £34.7 million, and the company managed to improve its gross margins from 28.1 per cent in the previous year to 28.8 per cent during FY 2003.

GAME opened 42 stores during the financial year, and the company's expansion is set to accelerate through 2004. Moves into new European territories are planned, such as Denmark where the first two GAME stores opened in Q1 this year, along with the expansion of retail chains in existing continental markets.

Meanwhile, an increased program of store openings in the UK which will see as many as 50 stores opening before the end of the year, bringing the total number of UK outlets over 400 in time for the Christmas season.

"This was the fourth consecutive year of profit growth achieved in even more difficult market conditions," commented GAME Group chairman Peter Lewis. "We are confident of making further progress this year and are even more confident of the medium to long term market outlook."

"We do not expect the market to be easy in 2004," he continued. "However, the combination of our inherent operational expertise, market leading position and store opening programme will produce another successful year where we aim to outperform the market again."

Author
Rob Fahey avatar

Rob Fahey

Contributing Editor

Rob Fahey is a former editor of GamesIndustry.biz who spent several years living in Japan and probably still has a mint condition Dreamcast Samba de Amigo set.