Camelot331, a Youtuber who has previously leaked Gamestop layoffs via an unknown source, just uploaded a video claiming that Gamestop is shutting down almost completely.
Camelot explains that the the next massive lay-off for the company is being called "Phase 3", where "Phase 1" was the initial regional manager lay-off at the beginning of August and "Phase 2" was the dismissal of over 100 corporate employees, including almost the entire senior editorial staff of Game informer. Now, "Phase 3" will see the shut down of almost every Gamestop retail location across the country.
Camelot explains that at a recent annual manager's conference, managers were told that in order to "save the company", a few retail locations would be transitioned into retro gaming and tabletop gaming stores, while the rest would be shut down. The news was extremely distressing to the managers, according to Camelot: "One guy told me that his district manager basically locked himself in his office and just doesn't talk to anybody."
Now, according to Camelot, district managers are required to create a list of employees that they "desire to keep" after the transition, that are "talented enough" to stay past Phase 3.
Gamestop operates 4,400 store in the U.S. and according to Camelot, by the end of fiscal quarter 4, over half of those stores will be permanently closed. The remaining 2,000 stores will be re-imagined as table-top/retro-gaming stores. The less profitable stores will be the first to be eliminated, and Camelot believes entire districts will be completely shut down.
Camelot goes on to hypothesize that regional managers will be eliminated all together, as the district manager position will be more than enough to cover the remaining store. He claims that phase 3 has been corroborated by 5 different Gamestop employees.
Gamestop stock has been suffering for over a year. Digital sales are on the rise, and the transition to merch and toys over the last few months was apparently not effective in bringing profitability back to the failing company. The partial closure is most likely a temporary way to give stock prices a boost before the company goes down for good. We've reached out to Gamestop for comment, and will update this story if they chose to respond.
As much as people hate Gamestop, this would be very sad news.