GameStop Expands to Focus on Tablets and Smartphones

Thursday, April 24th, 2014

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GameStop expansion will slightly scale back dependence on video games.

GameStop is one of the biggest video game retail chains in the world, but it hopes to broaden its horizons to potentially more lucrative markets. At their 2014 Investor Day, CEO Paul Raines announced plans to open several hundred new retail stores that specialize in AT&T and Apple branded smartphones and tablets. Dubbed “GameStop 3.0,” the idea is to lessen the company’s reliance on video games by expanding into other “game-adjacent” markets.

The retail stores at the center of this plan are Spring Mobile, an AT&T store which will receive 200 to 250 new stores, and Simply Mac, an Apple store that will get 20-25 new stores. GameStop also plans to close 120-130 of its own stores during this fiscal year. GameStop 3.0 marks a bold new outlook for the long time specialty retailer. It will be interesting to see what the future holds for the company in the coming years.


About Andrew Mathieu

My name is Andrew Mathieu. I'm a college student and I work part-time in my home state of Connecticut. I'm working towards being a writing and host three blogs on WordPress about animation, comic books, and video games. I hope to one day be able to write comic books and voice my opinions about my favorite fields of entertainment.

  • azariosays

    i honestly think this shows that they know people are starting to go more and more towards digital games and also preordering through sites like amazon. it’s only a matter of time before they will close more stores.

    • RagunaXL

      you definitely have a point! I want to say gamestop was a rebranding of babbage’s software. I can’t say for certain because I was really young at the time but I’m pretty sure babbage’s was a bookstore chain before that.

    • smacd

      It’s difficult to say whether Babbage’s rebranded, or not. Babbages used to be a software store (consoles and PC), not much of a bookstore though I wouldn’t be surprised if they had software related books at the time. At some point, a bunch of software/game shops including Babbages, Software Etc and several others merged and called themselves GameStop, and then they later merged with Funcoland and EB Games. GameStop did have an affiliation with Barnes & Noble at some point. (Information from both my own memory and some references from the wikipedia article on GameStop)

      This news isn’t particularly shocking. They are closing around 2% of their stores, and they are smartly investigating other business options in order to maintain their business. If I were an investor, I’d be stoked at this news knowing that GameStop was trying to figure out how to stay relevant in a digital distribution world. On the other hand, I don’t think what they are doing will be successful, but at least they are looking into it.

    • Brad Williams

      This is a couple days old but:
      Babbage’s rebranded. I started with the company back in 1996 (left in 2007) when it was Babbage’s and Software Etc as one company called Neostar, Inc. Around this time, the company entered bankruptcy protection and emerged as Babbage’s Etc, largely thanks to financial help from a bunch of Barnes & Noble heads. That was partly due to a number of Software Etc. and Software Plus stores located inside B&N stores. When the company bought Funcoland, which I think was around 1999-2000, they started rebranding all stores Gamestop. It wasn’t until 2005, I believe, that they bought EB.
      At any rate, yea, Gamestop is trying to keep themselves relevant. And they’re doing a good job. Last I recalled seeing, they were responsible for some insane percentage of digital funbucks cards that were sold regularly (PSN/XBL money, and digital codes for games). The tablet/mobile thing is a good move for them, especially as portable sales continue to erode.

  • Josh Omega

    honestly in my personal opinion this may do a lot of good. will probably see a huge increase in new game stores and of course retro game stores with less competition