Walmart to challenge Gamestop by expanding into used game sales
Walmart is getting deeper into the used games business, announcing today that it would begin allowing patrons to trade in used games for store credit later this month.
The new trade-in service will roll out to 3,100 Walmart stores across the U.S. on Wednesday, March 26th, and later this year Walmart will start sellling those used games back to customers.
Walmart stores already allow customers to trade in devices like tablets and smartphones for store credit, but until now the retailer has only accepted used games in exchange for Walmart gift cards as part of an online trade-in program.
Walmart representatives are upfront about the company's desire to move in on the lucrative used game business currently dominated by GameStop.
Gaming continues to be an important business for us," stated Duncan Mac Naughton, the chief merchandising and marketing officer for Walmart U.S., in a press release. "We're actively taking aim at the $2 billion pre-owned video game opportunity."
The business of buying and selling physical copies of used games is still pretty good. GameStop's most recent quarterly financial report
claimed that the company's sales of preowned products -- which have gross profit margins of nearly 50 percent -- rose 7 percent year-over-year, to $567.3 million. Still, the company is actively attempting to diversify its business -- selling games digitally, buying and selling used mobile devices, and the like -- in an attempt to avoid crumbling alongside the physical game market.