Investment Firm to Save GAME GroupBy: Sean Patterson - April 2, 2012
The BBC is reporting that the investment group OpCapita will save GAME Group PLC by buying a large portion of the insolvent company. Last week GAME Group administration was taken over by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in order to get the company into a sellable state. GAME and Gamestation stores operated by GAME Group began closing and employees began being laid-off. This followed a period where the company was in talks with suppliers and creditors to shore-up its financial position.
“We are pleased to have reached agreement with the Administrator. We strongly believe there is a place on the high street for a video gaming specialist and GAME is the leading brand in a £2.8 billion market in the UK. We have assembled a strong team of experienced industry operators to implement the programme of operational change that is needed. There is a huge amount to do but we look forward to the challenge of restoring GAME’s fortunes in partnership with its employees and suppliers,” said Henry Jackson, Managing Partner of OpCapita.
OpCapita released a statement on Sunday that stated 333 GAME and Gamestation stores in the UK will remain open and that nearly 3,200 jobs with the company will remain. The BBC reports that creditors led by the Royal Bank of Scotland, who are owed £85,000,000, have approved the sale.
“We are delighted to be able to secure this business sale and provide some much needed stability for customers, suppliers, and employees alike in these uncertain times. The support of these stakeholders has been crucial over the last week and I would like to thank them for their support throughout this difficult period,” said Mike Jervis, PwC partner and current GAME Group administrator. “This means that the GAME brand will not be another one of the retail names disappearing from the high street in the current difficult climate.”
Here is the BBC News commentary on whether GAME Group can come back and challenge online retailers: