In another holiday retail-related announcement, North American specialty electronic retailer Best Buy has announced that its revenue rose 12 percent to $5.7 billion for the month of December, compared with $5.1 billion for the fiscal month ended Jan. 1, 2005, and that combined video game hardware and software sales also rose for the month.
Overall, Best Buy's 104 new store openings in the past 12 months and a 5.8 percent comparable store sales gain, higher than expected The company attributed the gain to customer demand for consumer electronics, which drove higher average transaction sizes.
Despite the massive shortages of the Xbox 360, video games posted a high single-digit comparable store sales gain, according to Best Buy, as growth in video game hardware was slightly offset by a decline in video game software during the month of December. Although these results are somewhat positive, they do not contradict the generally poor North American holiday season for games.
However, games are part of the entertainment software product group at Best Buy, which actually posted a 3.6-percent comparable store sales decline, reflecting the continued shift in consumer interest to digital formats, as comparable store sales declines from DVDs and CDs kicked in.
"We exceeded our revenue expectations for December, which positions us well for our fiscal fourth quarter," said Brad Anderson, vice chairman and chief executive officer. "We're pleased and encouraged by the fact that virtually all of our businesses met or exceeded our expectations for December. As usual, customers shopped later than ever and results strengthened as the month progressed."