As Game officially enters administration, quite a lot has happened in a very short amount of time, and the troubled retailer is now in the midst of some truly tough changes, with a legion of staff being the most unfortunate of all.
Earlier today, after the appointment of PwC (PriceWaterhouseCoopers) as the administrators handling the case, Game CEO, Ian Shepherd, announced his resignation, stating that he always indented to let the administrators take charge of the business.
Upon announcing his resignation, Shepherd also promised big changes, and strongly indicated that store closures and redundancies were imminent. And, he wasn’t lying. Not long afterwards came the news that Game Group was to close 277 of its UK and Ireland stores which, in turn, means that just over 2,000 staff have lost their jobs. That’s around 40% of Game’s entire workforce.
All stores in Ireland have ceased trading, and many big city Game stores have already closed, including Birmingham, Leicester, Liverpool and Coventry. This initial round of closures isn’t the end, though, and it’s expected that around half of Game and GameStation stores will be closed over the next few days.
If you try to visit the game website, you’ll be greeted with a notice stating that the site is currently unavailable, whilst the administrators look into the business. It does state that the company is reviewing orders placed on the site, and so, hopefully, these will be completed.
If you’ve got any reward card balance left, or have been holding onto any gift cards, you’re going to be out of luck, as the company is no longer accepting these cards, and remaining staff are unable to issue refunds or accept balances as payment. In fact, there will be no refunds or exchanges of any products bought before, or during the administration period.
All of this news doesn’t really come as a surprise given recent events, and Game’s monumental share price plummet, but it doesn’t make it any more palatable. Many will no doubt complain about losing a local game store, and/or money in gift cards, but far more important is the loss of so many jobs.