If you live in the north of England; you’re bound to have visited a Grainger Games store at some point in the last decade. The Gaming shop which started as a market stall in Newcastle’s Grainger Market now has 68 stores all across the north and has 400 employees. In the last 20 years it has become the UK’s leading independent video game specialist. The stores future is now in doubt as the company has had vital credit facilities slashed by lenders; assumed to be a precaution due to a recent string of high street failures.
Stephen Bowyer, managing partner of Grainger games has said he was shocked to learn of the troubles, and said the company was now in talks with numerous parties about “the future of the business”. Mr Bowyer said: “Our trading has been strong in the period through Christmas with significant improvement against the previous year. In January 2018 we secured long working capital facilities bucking the market trend to support our successful diversification strategy.
“However, confidence in UK high street retail has been at an all-time low which has been further impacted by recent retailer failures.
“On the back of this, we have very recently been notified that Grainger has had or will have certain supplier credit limits cut or removed. This has come as shock to us all and presents a significant operating challenge driven by factors outside our control.
“Grainger has a strong brand across the North of England with a well known value proposition and diverse marketing offering. We are working tirelessly with our advisers to explore all options and are in dialogue with a number of interested parties regarding the future of the business.”
Last year Grainger Games Holdings Limited made an operating loss of £1.3m after its turnover dipped to £48.7m. In 2016 the firm had reported an operating loss of £223,000 and revenues of £51.1m.
It would be a real shame to see Grainer Games suffer the same fate as Toys ‘R’ Us; but with the increase of digital downloads and online sales, it’s easy to see why game stores are suffering. It’s awful to think that a business that started in the Grainger Market could be gone for good; it’s close to home for us here at GReviews.