Northern Ireland

GAME enters administration - 110 jobs to go

Game Group
Image caption Game Group's stores operate under the Game and Gamestation brands

The computer games retailer GAME has gone into administration.

The company employs 146 people in Northern Ireland and another 125 in the Irish Republic.

Thirteen of the shops in Northern Ireland will close, with the potential loss of about 110 jobs.

GAME has 18 branches in Northern Ireland and more than 600 across the UK, employing almost 5,000 people.

In the UK and Ireland, 277 shops are to cease trading with the loss of more than 2,000 jobs.

Those shops continuing to trade in Northern Ireland are: Newtownabbey (Abbey Centre), Belfast (Donegall Arcade), Craigavon (Rushmere Centre), Londonderry (Richmond Centre) and Newtownards.

The administrators, PwC, said they remain hopeful a sale of the business is achievable but add that will not stop the closure of many stores and the potential loss of thousands of jobs.

GAME has suffered with dire trading in recent months as it has been hit by competition from online-only retailers.

"Despite these challenges, we believe that there is room for a specialist game retailer in the territories in which it operates, including its biggest one, the UK," said one of the administrators, Mike Jervis.

"As a result, we are hopeful that a going concern sale of the business is achievable."

The administrators said they were working closely with employees affected to ensure they receive support and to assist with their claims for redundancy and other compensatory payments.

"Our priority is to continue trading the business as normal while we continue to pursue a sale," Mr Jervis added.

"The recent job losses are regrettable but will place the company in a stronger position while we explore opportunities to conclude a sale.

"My team and I will be doing all we can to help the affected employees at this difficult time."

The company asked for its shares to be suspended last Wednesday and announced it was planning to call in administrators.

It followed confirmation that some suppliers had stopped doing business with the retailer.

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