Game closures in Gloucestershire - 18 jobs lost
MORE than 20 jobs have been lost locally as retailer Game wields the axe on its network of stores.
Almost half the stores - 277 - run by collapsed retailer Game are to be closed this week triggering 2,104 job losses.
In Cheltenham seven jobs are going, Cirencester five, Gloucester six and four in Evesham.
Mike Jervis, joint administrator and partner at PwC said:
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“Our priority is to continue trading the business as normal while we continue to pursue a sale. The recent job losses are regrettable but will place the company in a stronger position while we explore opportunities to conclude a sale. My team and I will be doing all we can to help the affected employees at this difficult time.”
The remaining 333 stores employing 2,814 people will stay open as normal while the administrators continue their efforts to find a purchaser for the business.
The group's lenders were reportedly working on plans to buy a slimmed-down version of the retailer out of administration.
A consortium of existing banks led by state-backed Royal Bank of Scotland is understood to be among three potential bidders, along with American rival Gamestop and OpCapita, which recently acquired consumer electronics business Comet.
Mr Jervis said he believes that there is still room for a specialist video games retailer in the UK despite the difficult conditions it has suffered in recent months and remains hopeful the business can be sold as a going concern.
Game, which also employs about 385 staff at its headquarters in Basingstoke, Hampshire, last week said it planned to appoint an administrator, having admitted there was no value left in the company.
The chain’s demise follows a string of profit warnings and the failure of nervous suppliers, including Electronic Arts and Nintendo, to go on providing new games.
The retailer had a £21 million rent bill due yesterday and faces a £12 million wage bill this weekend, although PwC is expected to honour any wages owed. There is also £10 million in VAT and £40 million owed to suppliers.
Game suffered a dismal Christmas and was later forced to ask suppliers for more generous trading terms.
But many stopped supplying it with new releases, such as Mass Effect 3 and Street Fighter X Tekken, leaving fans disappointed and adding to the group’s trading woes.
Game agreed fresh lending facilities with banks last month and began seeking access to alternative sources of funding earlier this month.
The group has already signalled that losses for the year to the end of January are likely to be around £18 million.