CEO: Where Others Dabble, GameStop Does A Difficult Job

In an interview with The Street, GameStop's CEO speaks of growing the company's web presence, but obliquely reminds everyone that used gaming is a business where few have the will - or the resources - to get their hands dirty.

"There is competition out there that likes to dabble in this segment, but I'd like to remind people that we have seen this many times before," Paul Raines told The Street. Pricing buybacks and sales is complex. We have a refurbishment facility and last year recycled 100 million units. This system is difficult to replicate."

So take that kiosks; you got a facility? Raines' remarks follow - and directly address - those of a deputy who, in England last week, said the company doesn't "like being in the used business, it's very difficult to manage".

In the rest of the interview, Raines spoke aspirationally about turning GameStop's web page from something that's purely sales-oriented to a "multi-channel aggregator for gaming". Not the dreaded "portal" word, necessarily, but "a gaming platform that users can visit to play, learn and purchase games".

Even though in-store retail sales are in a slump, consumers are slow to migrate to online sales of boxed content, Raines said. So the platform idea backs what Raines sees as a need for consumer education. Elsewhere, the company's looking at companies like Netflix to plot their next move.

"The technology is clear – what's not clear is the chronology," Raines told The Street. "We are getting a good picture of how to balance digital and physical content."

GameStop CEO Talks Up "Gaming Platform" Ambitions [GamesIndustry.biz via GamePolitics]


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