GameStop: Wii Shortage 'Intentional', PS3 Euro Launch 'Good, Not Great'
In the investor conference call following GameStop's financial results
announced this morning, company execs discussed the major U.S. video game retailer's plans for coming fiscal year, with company chairman and CEO R. Richard Fontaine calling the recent period the beginnings of a “cycle on steroids.”
Commenting on the continuing scarcity of the Wii console, COO Dan DeMatteo revealed expectations of more stock in the immediate weeks ahead. “I believe that next week we get our first allocations of Wii and DSs and we are quite pleased with those numbers. We were concerned about the dryness here in March, but it looks like April is going to be good.”
When asked if the retailer believes if the Wii shortage will be a recurring problem, the executive responded, “I don't think it's going to be an issue...and this just my opinion, but I think [Nintendo] intentionally dried up supply because they made their numbers for the year. The new year starts April 1, and I think we're going to see supply flowing.”
Offering some initial impressions of the recent launch of the PlayStation 3, Fontaine commented: “I think the summary of [recent discussions with European directors] was a very good launch, falling somewhat short of what they would determine to be a great launch. We were probably more happy with how well we did selling through as a percentage of our reservations than perhaps some of the mass merchants, but I think we'd tab it exactly that way.”
Finally, GameStop officials theorized that a possible price cut for the PlayStation 2 could possibly happen, though Fontaine added that that “...we have no knowledge from Sony that there will be a price cut, however if sales slowed they probably have enough profit in that unit that they could reduce it to that $99.”
However, he continued by noting that, “as a matter of fact, given the way that they are selling, I would suspect that they would not cut the price at this point.”