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GameStop, EB merger results in job cuts and warehouse closures

Having just completed its acquisition of Electronics Boutique, videogame retailer GameStop has announced the intended closure of EB's Philadelphia headquarters, resulting in hundreds of redundancies.

Having just completed its acquisition of Electronics Boutique, videogame retailer GameStop has announced the intended closure of EB's Philadelphia headquarters, resulting in hundreds of redundancies.

According to reports from the Philadelphia Business Journal, Electronics Boutique's headquarters and associated warehouses will be steadily closed, in a process which will be staggered throughout the year, and completed by the summer of 2006.

The closures will result in the loss of some 576 full-time positions and an additional 159 seasonal and temporary positions. The closure of EB's West Chester headquarters will mark the final stage of the brand removal, as all retail outlets and associated buildings are re-branded with the GameStop label.

Reports suggest that some staff will be offered relocation packages, with the offer of joining GameStop's headquarters in Grapevine, Texas. Although no further job losses have been announced, it is thought that further consolidation of the retail outlets could result in further cuts, as the new combined company now owns 4.200 retail outlets, some of which are in extremely close proximity and currently operate under the EB brand.

GameStop recently announced its new executive management line-up, which remained largely unchanged, save for the additional board representation of four former EB executives, including EB founder James J. Kim. Analysts at Wedbush Morgan upgraded its stock rating from 'Hold' to 'Buy', stating that although the company's price had drifted recently, an increase in stock value was expected once GameStop announces its revised revenue forecasts for the new combined company.

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Paul Loughrey

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