Officials from major U.S. video games retailer GameStop have reported details of the company’s fourth quarter and full financial year results, for the period ended February 2nd. For the full year the company saw sales increase by 33 percent to a record $7.1 billion, with a 24.7 percent increase in comparable store sales.
Profits for the full year were $288.3 million, including debt retirement costs of $12.6 million. This compares to earnings of $158.3 million for the 2006 financial year. The company also became the world’s fastest growing retailer in the Fortune 500 and saw the opening of 586 new stores.
For the fourth quarter profits were $189.8 million, an increase of 46.2 percent on the same period a year ago. Fourth quarter sales increased by 24.4 percent to $2.87 billion. On a comparable store basis, sales increased 17.4 percent and new video game software sales grew 38.4 percent.
The company named Activision’s Call of Duty 4, Electronic Arts’ Rock Band, Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed, Nintendo’s Super Mario Galaxy and Activision’s Guitar Hero III as the five best selling games during the period.
On the back of these positive results, the company is projecting sales growth of between 19 to 21 percent for the 2008 fiscal year, with comparable store sales increasing from between 10 to 12 percent.
In the shorter term, the first quarter of the 2008 fiscal year is expected to see a sales increase of between 24 to 25 percent, buoyed by expected strong sales of prominent titles such as Nintendo’s Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Capcom’s Devil May Cry 4 and Take-Two Interactive’s Grand Theft Auto IV.
R. Richard Fontaine, chairman and CEO commented, “Our performance in 2007 was impressive from many perspectives. But what is particularly noteworthy is that 2007 was a transformative year with hardware sales setting records and the installed base of users reaching an all-time high.”
“Prospects for the 575-600 new store openings in 2008 look very promising even with the current concerns about the US economy. As one of the few American retailers actively seeking many new sites, GameStop is positioned to secure better locations with more advantageous lease terms and is more frequently being viewed as a critical brand to anchor strip centers,” added Fontaine.