Officials from leading UK video games retailer GAME have announced the company’s latest six month financial results, in which pre-tax losses were cut by almost a half from the previous year, despite considerable expansion by the company.
Pre-tax losses in the six months to July 31st were down from £14.7 million ($27.8m) in 2006 to £7.1 million ($13.4m) this year. Turnover during the same period rose from £220.8 million ($417.6m) to £272.9 million ($516.1m), while operating losses fell from £10.3 million ($19.5m) to £5.6 million ($10.6m).
Although the company has been suffering, along with other retailers worldwide, during the extended change over period between console generations, it has also seen significant resources spent on store expansions. Thirty-nine stores were opened during the sixth month period and twelve were closed. The company now operates 410 stores in the UK and Ireland and 320 shops and thirty-five franchises in Europe.
The company now also operates eighteen stores in Australia, where it has spent £22 million ($41.6m) this year expanding its presence. An additional ten to fifteen stores are also planned in France and forty to fifty in Spain and Portugal, while a new £2.5 million ($4.7m) refurbishment program is currently being planned for the UK and Ireland.
“The Board remains confident that this year will be better than last and to date our performance has been encouraging,” commented GAME chairman Peter Lewis. “Hardware for the Xbox 360, PSP, Nintendo DS and PS2 is in free supply and consumer demand remains strong and with around 800 stores trading through the key Christmas trading season, GAME is well positioned to benefit.”
“We are looking forward to Christmas 2006 and beyond as the next generation consoles continue to launch with the Nintendo Wii due to launch in December 2006 and Sony PlayStation 3 due to launch in March 2007,” added Lewis. “The Board has increased the interim dividend by 10 percent reflecting our confidence in the future.”