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Investors urge GameStop to overhaul retail strategy amid management upheaval

Tiger Management threatens to sell off stake in retailer should GameStop fail to heed its advice

Retail giant GameStop is being urged by investors to conduct a strategic review following the sudden departure of CEO Michael Mauler.

According to a letter seen by CNBC, hedge fund Tiger Management described the recent upheaval as "an unprecedented opportunity" to overhaul the retailer's strategy and "revive shareholder confidence in the sustainability of the GameStop business model".

While Tiger Management stated its intention to "remain a passive shareholder", it did threaten to sell its shares and "redeploy capital towards more attractive investment opportunities" should GameStop fail to implement a turnaround plan.

The tumult was first sparked after former CEO Paul Raines stood down for medical reasons; he left the company in November 2017 and died in March this year.

Following Raines' departure, Mauler was appointed as CEO and two top executives were fired within days; Mauler himself resigned from the company last Friday after only three months, and co-founder Daniel DeMatteo was named the interim CEO.

Chaos on the upper rungs of management has only been compounded by a 45 per cent decline in share prices over the last year, despite a reasonably strong financial performance.

While the exact size of Tiger's stake is unknown, CNBC reports its stake at the end of the last quarter as only 25,000 shares.

"We hope that this is only the first step and that you will strategically evaluate all facets of the business to develop a more detailed turnaround plan, which can then be communicated to shareholders," the letter reads.

Tiger has suggested that GameStop consider cost-cutting measures such as selling off "ancillary business that continue to drain valuable resources, especially Technology Brands, ThinkGeek.com, and International segments".

A GameStop representative told CNBC that the firm received the letter and has a "long track record of welcoming communication from all of its shareholders and values constructive input that may help increase shareholder value".

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Ivy Taylor

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Ivy joined GamesIndustry.biz in 2017 having previously worked as a regional journalist, and a political campaigns manager before that. They are also one of the UK's foremost Sonic the Hedgehog apologists.

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