GameStop Closing Hundreds of More Stores

GameStop has closed nearly 500 stores so far this year, nearly 800 stores in the last two years, [...]

GameStop has closed nearly 500 stores so far this year, nearly 800 stores in the last two years, and is planning to close hundreds of more before April of next year. It's been a rough few years for GameStop as more and more gamers move to embrace digital gaming. In 2020, this trend continued, and COVID-19 accelerated this transition and crippled retailers in the process.

The video game retailer has confirmed that it has closed 462 stores as of October 31. This is up substantially year-over-year. Last year, GameStop closed many stores as well, but only 321. This means that within two years it has closed a massive 783 stores, and there are still more closures coming.

The retailer, during an earnings call with investors today, revealed it plans to close over 1,000 stores by the end of the fiscal year, which is to say, by April 1, 2021. In other words, over the next several months, presumably after the holiday rush, it will close hundreds of more stores. Despite all of this, the retailer is apparently projecting a strong fourth quarter, bolstered by the holiday season and the rush for the PS5, and to a lesser extent, the rush for the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S.

"We begin the fourth quarter with unprecedented demand in new video game consoles that launched in November, which drove a 16.5% increase in comparable-store sales for the month, despite being closed on Thanksgiving Day and the impact of COVID-19 related store closures, which affected most of our European footprint," said CEO George Sherman via Games Industry.

Sherman continued:

"We anticipate, for the first time in many quarters, that the fourth quarter will include positive year-on-year sales growth and profitability, reflecting the introduction of new gaming consoles, our elevated omni-channel capabilities and continued benefits from our cost and efficiency initiatives, even with the potential further negative impacts on our operations due to the global COVID-19 pandemic."

Unfortunately, there are no specifications when it comes to what stores are being closed or what regions are being impacted the most. That said, while it's horrible news that many will soon be without a job, to be fair to GameStop, it did warn investors and the public this massive wave of closures was coming.