Specialist retailer GAME has revealed its interim results for the first six months of 2006, with operating losses down to GBP 5.6 million (8.3 million euro), compared to a loss of GBP 10.3 (15.4 euro) million for the same period last year.
Like-for-like sales for the six months ended July 31st 2006 increased by 13.4 per cent to GBP 272.9 million (406.8 million euro) compared to 220.8 million (329.2 million euro) in the same period last year.
The company is confident performance will continue to improve this year, with hardware in plentiful supply and consumer interest high, as it rebrands stores in the UK and continues to expand in Europe.
"Hardware for the Xbox 360, PSP, Nintendo DS and PS2 is in free supply and consumer demand remains strong," said Peter Lewis, chairman of GAME.
"The Board remains confident that this year will be better than last and to date our performance has been encouraging. With around 800 stores trading through the key Christmas trading season, GAME is well positioned to benefit," he added.
The retailer continues to support its strongest markets, and after a trial period, is commencing the rollout of a new store format incorporating strong branded visual merchandising and a new product layout, across the UK and Ireland.
The costs of the new refurbishment programme will be GBP 2.5 million (3.7 million euro), and not the GBP 30 million (44.7 million) reported in some areas of the press.
"Our aim is to target the Group's resources towards those markets with the strongest return characteristics and where we believe our expertise can deliver real improvements in performance," said the company.
Elsewhere in Europe, GAME intends to open between ten and 15 stores in France, and 40 to 50 outlets across Spain and Portugal.