GAME to close Gameplay.co.uk and 35 stores - MCV

GAME to close Gameplay.co.uk and 35 stores

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GAME will close Gameplay.co.uk next week, MCV can reveal.

All that website's customers will now be served via Gamestation.co.uk as of March 1st.

The move makes sense for GAME. It acquired Gameplay back in 2004 but since then it has become a forgotten brand at the retail specialist. The site was also not updated when GAME and Gamestation relaunched its websites last year.

Meanwhile, GAME has also informed a further 35 stores that they will be closed. It is part of the store closures already announced by the firm. There are currently 610 GAME and GameStation High Street stores and this will be reduced to 550 outlets by Christmas 2013.

The company says it has a 'detailed plan to help customers move to another local store or online' and says it will do its best to redeploy its staff if possible.

"So that all of our customers can enjoy the benefits of the new online platform that we launched last year, Gameplay customers will be served through Gamestation.co.uk from March 1st 2012, including customer support for their purchases," said a GAME spokesperson

"All new orders will be directed through gamestation.co.uk from that date. We're talking to our customers who access our online community through Gameplay about this today, and look forward to welcoming them to the growing community at gamestation.co.uk."

But it's not all bad news for GAME Group. The firm will finally upgrade its in-store IT systems next month. The new system fully connects their online platform with the stores. That means click and collect should be on the way. More information will be available next month.

The news comes a year after the firm announced its 'Dedicated to Gaming' strategy. The company's strategy is to grow its multi-channel and digital offerings, whilst reduce its store count.

The news follows troubled times at GAME Group, which has suffered severe credit issues following a disappointing Christmas. The Group has secured a reduced banking facility to help it trade through the coming weeks. However, some games are still absent from store shelves.

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