GAME admits Christmas sales slump

Written by Joe Martin

December 8, 2009 | 11:08

Tags: #2009 #credit-crunch #fall #recession #retail #sales #supermarket

Companies: #game

UK games retailer GAME has revealed a notable dip in sales in the run-up to Christmas 2009 with sales dropping across all platforms despite the strong performance of key titles like Modern Warfare 2 and FIFA.

According to MCV the GAME Group's sales have fallen by 10.8 percent for the year until December 5th. Like-for-like sales on the same period last year have dropped by 15.1 percent and total sales are 14.3 percent down.

According to chairman Peter Lewis the plummet can be largely blamed on supermarket price cut tactics. Earlier this year many supermarkets went into a pricing war with some titles, slashing the price of games like Modern Warfare 2 far below what specialist stores were offering.

"Since the half year, there have been a number of major software releases including Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and FIFA 10, which both broke records in their first week of launch," said Lewis in a statement.

"However, the exceptionally strong performance of these titles was in part offset by softer than expected sales of some other releases...We have seen strong competition in all of the markets that we operate in. In the UK, in particular, we have seen significant pricing activity from the supermarkets"

It's not all doom and gloom though - the firm also opened 43 new stores in the last six months and claims that the pre-owned market is booming.

"Over the longer term, we believe the video games market will continue to trend towards higher margin software and peripherals," concluded Lewis.

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