Down but not out

GAME Group plc. has entered administration.

The retailer filed for administration last week but, having been unable to find a buyer over the weekend, was officially placed into administration yesterday morning.

Administrators PwC made an immediate impact on reducing the company's store portfolio, closing 277 stores with the loss of over 2,000 jobs in one day. MCV has the full list of closed stores. Its online retailers have ceased trading, and customers currently cannot spend their accrued loyalty points or any value on a trade-in card. Hardware trade-ins, trading games for cash and refunds are also all suspended while the company is in administration.

The retailer is still on borrowed time: if it can't find a suitable buyer within the coming days and weeks it could see further store closures and redundancies.

The first signs that GAME Group was in trouble came last month when its Christmas sales reports showed lower than expected profits, resulting in a decreased credit facility with its banks. This meant the chain had to purchase stock up-front with cash instead of relying on traditional credit agreements, vastly limiting its ability to stock new games with a number of high-profile titles missing from the retailer.

Sony Computer Entertainment UK continued to provide the chain with stock, but all games and hardware were clearly marked with stickers stating "property of Sony Computer Entertainment, do not remove until sold", hardly a vote of confidence.

Our most sincere best wishes to everyone who's been affected by the store closures. Here's hoping you all get a 1-up soon.