“The feeling is that with new formats coming and a new confidence in online businesses, thanks to Lastminute’s success, Play could be nearing the perfect time to move,” said one analyst.
Play.com has had a major impact on the entertainment retail sector in just a few short years. It has used the fact that it was founded in Jersey to exploit a loophole that avoids VAT, driving consumer awareness and market share largely via price. As well as games, Play.com sells DVDs, music, books, gadgets and ringtones.
Having advertised on TV for the first time last Christmas, it is likely to promote itself heavily again through Q4 as it looks to increase its market share, estimated to be around three per cent of the UK games market.
The company, which has its entire buying team based in Cambridge, refused to comment.