GameStop chief financial officer Jim Bell is set to resign from his position on March 26, the video game retailer announced today. He’ll do so $US2.8 ($4) million richer thanks to a lucrative severance bonus.
According to SEC filings first reported by IGN, the contract Bell signed with GameStop in 2019 affords him a severance bonus of double his combined annual salary ($US700,000) and annual bonus opportunity ($US700,000), resulting in the $4 million ($US2.8 million) windfall.
This news comes after a year that saw GameStop close more than 400 stores and left regular employees without the same support, unless you consider forcing them to do TikTok dances for holiday hours comparable to rewarding a departing executive with millions of dollars.
Kotaku reporting from throughout 2020 also found the company negligent in protecting employees during the covid-19 pandemic, with management fighting to stay open as “essential retail” and by overwhelming already-depleted staff during the launch of the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S.
“I have no idea what our corporate office was doing trying to get people to flock to the store in the thick of the pandemic and rising covid numbers,” one GameStop employee told Kotaku at the time.
GameStop has been in freefall for years due to the rise of digital video game sales, an issue that the covid-19 pandemic has only compounded. Executives have tried everything from misleading customers to firing nearly half the staff behind its in-store Game Informer magazine to stay afloat. To be fair, how is CEO George Sherman going to survive without making $US1.1 million every year?