The new-look Game Retail was forced to pay owners OpCapita a significant sum in the months following its buyout despite continuing to post a loss.
The Telegraph reports that GAME posted a loss of £18.2m in the four months following its buyout last April – but in the same period still had to stump up £3.2m in interest and “monitoring fees” to OpCapita.
In total Game Retail owes OpCapita £103m and is paying an “interest rate of 7.5 per cent above the base rate of Barclays”.
The discovery has caught the interest of the business press following the criticisms directed at OpCapita after the collapse of Comet – a chain it had rescued from administration just a year ago.
OpCapita boss Henry Jackson is understood to have done very well financially out of the collapse. Indeed, the structure of OpCapita’s retail buyouts mean that it is always first in line ahead of creditors should its brands fail.
None of which is dampening GAME’s positivity. GAME boss Martyn Gibbs told The Guardian that Game Retail is expected to make £20m in profit for the year ending July 31st 2013.
It also plans to open 18 new stores in the same period.
“In 2013, there is much anticipation around the release of Grand Theft Auto V and the company looks forward to further new hardware releases from Microsoft and Sony in coming years,” added Gibbs.
UPDATE: A GAME representative has contacted MCV to clarify some of the numbers.
It says that GAME in fact paid just £2.6m to its direct owners Capitex Holdings Limited, which itself is owned by a number of investors. Further payments of £636,000 (described in the accounts as 'monitoring fees') were made to cover the extensive restructuring fees needed to recover the troubled portfolio the company inherited from The GAME Group as well as the costs of merging the GAME and Gamestation brands.