US games retailer GameStop’s issues continue as Game Informer confirms a further round of layoffs. This time, it’s non-editorial staff that have been affected by the cuts.
The news came via a post by Game Informer editor-in-chief, Andy McNamara, in which they thank publisher Cathy Preston for 20 years as publisher at the company.
“Cathy’s retirement comes as we restructure the business unit here at Game Informer,” McNamara wrote. “Unfortunately, that means we are also saying goodbye to six other great people who were a part of what makes this place so special and were integral to Game Informer’s success story.”
As part of a “workforce reduction”, GameStop laid off more than 120 people last August, including almost half the editorial team employed at its subsidiary magazine, Game Informer. The cuts affected staff working at the company’s corporate headquarters in Grapevine, Texas and Game Informer’s HQ in Minnesota, and equated to almost 14 per cent of its global workforce.
US games retailer GameStop has had a difficult few years, culminating in a potential buyout thought to complete and go public by the middle of February 2019 eventually falling through.
The company’s troubles are the usual, much discussed, issues facing many high street retailers, such as the shift to digital stores, competition from online retailers – Amazon in particular – and now an increasing move to subscription services from the big publishers and platform holders. A source close to GameStop reported that at least two companies – thought to be Sycamore Partners and Apollo Global Management – were interested in buying GameStop, but news of the pullout sent share prices tumbling.
The news came less than a year after long-standing CEO Paul Raines died in March 2018, after which GameStop CEO Michael Mauler quit the post “for personal reasons” after just three months in the role. Shane Kim, former GM of Microsoft Game Studios (as it was then called) – and seven-year board member of GameStop – is the current CEO.
Two UK magazines were also shuttered in October 2018. GamesMaster and games™ had long and storied histories, with the former dating back to 1993, and the latter running since 2002. Their closure leaves Future’s Edge magazine as the last, long-running proponent in the multi-format games space.