Texas owner to close 19 Australian EB Games stores this month

GameStop intends to open more Australian ZiNG stores this year. ZiNG sells pop culture products alongside games.

The Dallas-based owner of video entertainment chain EB Games intends to close 19 of its 300-plus Australian stores by the end of the month.

GameStop – the world’s biggest video game retailer – sent suppliers emails overnight confirming the news.

Gaming website kotaku.com.au broke the story this morning, with this item.

News of which stores will close have since been followed up in more detail by media outlets including ozbargain.com.au, businessinsider.com.au and news.com.au.

“Like all businesses, we are constantly evaluating our property portfolio to ensure that our stores mix is in-line with the ever changing retail landscape,” an EB Games statement said.

“After careful consideration, we will be closing 19 unprofitable stores at the end of January”.

The retailer added that it this year plans to open more large format ZiNG stores – which sell pop culture products.

Which stores will close?

Twenty stores have recently been removed from EB Games’ Australian website, including:

In the Australian Capital Territory, at Majura Park

New South Wales: Birkenhead Point, Blacktown, Inverell, Rockdale, Tamworth and Winston Hills

Queensland: Bribie Island, Cleveland, Inala, Lutwyche and Underwood

South Australia: Adelaide City Cross, Brickworks, Hallet Cove and Harbourtown

Western Australia: Dianella and Kalamundra

Victoria: Dandenong, Docklands and Hamilton.

As well as the EB Games outlets, GameStop trades from 80 Australian ZiNG Pop Culture outlets.

The company reiterated that it plans to expand the six-year old ZiNG brand nationally this year.

“These hybrid [Zing] stores, combined with our strong omni-channel offering, six million loyalty members and 300-plus locations across Australia, will see EB Games continue to be one of Australia’s largest speciality retailers,” the statement added.

In Australia, ZiNG Pop Culture, like EB Games, is headquartered in Brisbane.

GameStop resetting after 2019 share price crash

GameStop’s share price collapsed last year – by 13 per cent in one hit, nine months ago, 30 per cent as at June and 57 per cent by September.

The company was under temporary management for much of that time.

Interestingly, shares spiked about 29 per cent in December as the company embarked further on its rebound plan.

Each is today worth about USD$5.72.

According to this item by investment research website themotleyfool.com, “video game software and hardware sales collapsed under the weight of a console transition and the continued move toward digital purchasing”.

Comparable store sales plunged 23 per cent in the December quarter and 12 per cent for the previous three month period, it added, of the parent.

The opening of a large-format EB Games/ZiNG Pop Culture outlet at Stockland’s Bundaberg Shopping Centre in September, 2018.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and journalist, Marc is the publisher of realestatesource.com.au.

Marc Pallisco