What Credit Crunch? UK Games Retail Thriving In Tough Times

Friday 12th December/...Despite a widely-reported slowdown in consumer spending on the High Street, the majority of specialist games retailers are enjoying a more lucrative Christmas than they did last year. This is according to the findings of a new nationwide study– the MCV Retail Survey 2008– which shows that 58 per cent of UK retailers believe their Christmas takings are up on 2007.

This year’s annual Retail Survey is the result of in-depth research from leading video games trade journal MCV, featuring responses from a wide variety of UK retailers, including GAME, Blockbuster, Gamestation, HMV and a range of independent stores. The study shows that games retailers are remaining cheerful, despite the reported gloom on the High Street– with 86 per cent of respondents saying they feel confident about their business’s prospects during 2009.

Nintendo emerges as UK games retail’s favourite company of 2008– nudging out Microsoft and GAME. Store managers praised the sales achievements of Nintendo software– particularly Christmas No.1 contenders Wii Fit and Mario Kart Wii.

Other highlights included Ubisoft being named‘Best Games Publisher for Quality and Attitude to Retail’. The French company took 26 per cent of the vote– nudging out EA, which took 25 per cent.

Fifty-six per cent of respondents believed Activision Blizzard’s Call Of Duty: World At War would be No.1 in the GFK-ChartTrack All Formats Christmas chart.

“This is great news for anyone who works in the UK games industry,” said MCV Editor-In-Chief Michael French.“MCV’s Retail Survey provides a vital snapshot of what’s on the minds of store managers up and down the country– and it’s wonderful to know that they’re succeeding in amongst all of the doom and gloom currently facing the High Street.

“It appears they have good reason to be optimistic about next year, despite the likely backdrop of even greater economic trouble ahead. If games retailers continue to be a beacon of success as other trades struggle, it will offer yet more evidence of the UK games industry’s growing importance to the British economy.”

For more information on the MCV Retail Survey 2008, contact Tim.Ingham@intentmedia.co.uk.

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