"I think the day you see us in the creative side is when you can tell me we’ve officially lost our minds."
- GameStop CEO Paul Raines denies his company will seek to involve itself in the development process as it expands into publishing and development.
Time has published an interview with GameStop CEO Paul Raines
today that offers some interesting insight into how the retail giant perceives its role in the game industry and what value it thinks it can offer developers.
The interview comes shortly after a financial analyst with R.W. Baird reported that GameStop management was discussing the possibility of amping up the company's participation in game development
during a recent investor meeting.
Excerpts from that meeting were published by Gamasutra and other media outlets, eliciting some (justified) concern from the development community that GameStop representatives might try to involve themselves in the creative development process of games in an effort to secure more exclusive content for the chain's customers. Raines says that's not the plan.
"All we’re talking about is extending [our] capital and distribution skill-set into the console publishing and development space," said Raines, referring to the fact that GameStop (through its property Kongregate.com) already funds developers and publishes mobile games. "I don’t think that involves any creative controls or influence at all. I think we’d be foolish to tell developers how to develop games or publishers how to bring product to market."
Raines goes on to elucidate how GameStop is hoping to expand its business beyond games, buying up the SimplyMac chain of Apple electronics outlets and acquiring wireless retailer Spring Mobile
"We’ve got great people, we’re flipping leases of GameStop stores into phone stores, we’re bringing associates over from the gaming space there," said Raines. "The bottom line is, we’re trying to redefine ourselves as a family of specialty retail brands."
The full interview is worth reading over on the Time website