GameStop has given up trying to sell the company because nobody wants to buy it.
We don’t know whether to be happy or sad. On the one hand, GameStop has been a virtual monopoly for over a decade, gouging people on used game sales and causing developers to lose out on possible income. On the other hand, they’re one of the few remaining bastions of gamer-dom in the commercial space since traditional toy stores are going out of business.
And things don’t look good for GameStop, either. The company has been struggling as more and more gamers go all-digital, eschewing physical copies of games in favor of a slightly steeper internet bill. Last June, the company began the process of trying to find a potential buyer in order to stave off yet more store closures.
That search hasn’t gone well for GameStop. We’ll give you the pertinent line from their statement released last Tuesday: "GameStop’s Board has now terminated efforts to pursue a sale of the company due to the lack of available financing on terms that would be commercially acceptable to a prospective acquirer."
In regular-folk talk, GameStop can’t find anyone to pay them a fair price because nobody thinks they’re worth anything. Or at least, they won’t be worth anything for very much longer.
Quite simply, GameStop is facing the existential threat of market that doesn’t care for physical copies of games anymore. They’ve been trying to diversify their stores with various toys and knick-knacks that are only tangentially related to video games, but they’re basically on their last legs.
Rumors abound that the next version of the Xbox or PlayStation won’t even have a physical drive anymore. When that happens, it’s hard to see GameStop still being in business.