This article first appeared on RTL.de.
The US company Gamestop claims to be the world's largest retail chain for computer games. In Germany there are around 170 branches in many cities. But the computer games dealer has been in turbulence for some time, which is also clearly noticeable in Germany. Many Gamestop branches will be closed in 2023. An overview shows which locations are affected.
Two years ago, Gamestop became a pawn in the financial world: In January 2021, the share price rose by 1,000 percent. But the stock market miracle had a curious background: small investors wanted to pee on the big hedge funds and screw up the business.
Hedge funds worth billions had bet on falling prices at Gamestop in 2020. An almost normal process in the financial world, because business at Gamestop was bad. But the courses did not fall at first, quite the opposite: a community of small investors formed on the Internet, who bought shares in Gamestop on principle to drive the courses up – to wipe out the stock market professionals. Especially in the Reddit forum "r/wallstreetbets", the stock market activists and Gamestop fans cheered each other on.
Even the German financial regulator Bafin had to take action and check unauthorized stock gambling by its own employees. In the whole chaos, the Gamestop finance director had to resign. The company's downward trend accelerated even more.
As the specialist portal "GamesWirtschaft" reports, many Gamestop branches will have to close in Germany in the next few weeks. By 2022, Gamestop operated more than 170 stores. At the wedding there were around 200 branches. Now it comes to a real clear cut. Ten branches had to close in 2022, and around 80 more branches will close in 2023.
Another blow for the inner cities, because Gamestop joins the list of well-known names such as Galeria Karstadt Kaufhof, H
As "GamesWirtschaft" further reports, there are discounts of up to 40 percent on games and merchandise in the affected branches. The following branches have already had to close in 2022 or will close in 2023:
What's next for Gamestop? An RTL request initially went unanswered. The branch closures will leave a gap, especially for many young gamers. A meeting place in the real world is disappearing, and as is so often the case, only the Internet remains.