Despite a successful expansion program in 2015, EB Games has been unable to maintain its financial growth throughout 2016. Even after opening roughly 20 new stores across Australia and making introductory pushes into new markets with its Zing Pop Culture stores, Progress Bar has been informed that the level of overall consumer demand has tapered off. Sources claim that whilst the company continues to operate at a profit, future plans of expansion into 2017 have been stalled.
As the Australian economy continues through a period of shaky growth, these findings are not too surprising as news of below average Christmas sales were reported in January. Similar electronic retailers like JB Hi-Fi are attempting to diversify their product offerings, following a takeover bid of $870 million AUD for home goods supplier The Good Guys back in September 2016. If this trend continues across the entire economy and the rumoured introduction of Amazon to the Australian market becomes a reality, times are looking tough for EB Games.
So how is the company looking to combat this plateau in the near future? One of the counter-measures they have employed is the recent downscale of their Australian video game expo “EB Expo” which has now been moved back to its original home on the Gold Coast in Queensland. Along with this move came a reduction in total days the Expo will be held for, coming down from three(3) to two(2).
Sources from EB Games also confirmed that EB World Level 5 was coming, and was initially planned as an invite only level with requirements that included a minimum trade/buy. This new level was set to be added sometime in 2017 but the company is unsure if it will be enough to keep their customers attention. EB Games may need to start adapting to the new age of sales and keep up with its competitors if they want to stay in this ever-growing market.
EB Games, a subsidiary of the American GameStop is Australia’s largest games and pop culture retailer, with over 380 stores and 5,000 employees.