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Facade with sign and logo at Game Stop video gaming store in Dublin, California, August 23, 2018. … [+] (Photo by Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)
Several of Game Informer’s editorial staff took to Twitter on Tuesday to reveal that they had been laid off from the long-running video game magazine, which is owned by GameStop. The positions at the magazine make up just one part of GameStop’s layoffs, which apparently eliminated 120 positions for a total of 14% of the company’s total associate base at its headquarters and other offices in what GameStop is calling necessary to “reduce costs and better align the organization with our efforts to optimize the business to meet our future objectives and success factors.”
The layoffs seem to have impacted several of the staff at the Minneapolis-based publication. It seemed early on when the news broke that the decision came from GameStop, based on a tweet from former managing editor Matt Bertz.
”Today GameStop informed me that I don’t work at Game Informer anymore,” Bertz wrote in a tweet on Tuesday. “I was very proud to manage and work alongside that incredible team of editors, designers, writers, podcasters, programmers, videographers, and gamers. They will always be fam to me.”
Other staff, including Elise Favis, Kyle Hilliard, Imran Khan, Jeff Marchiafava and Suriel Vazquez, took to Twitter to reveal that they, too, had been laid off.
I attempted to reach out to current and former employees, but was not able to gather the exact number of those laid off at the magazine. It is also unclear at this point if staff from departments at the magazine other than editorial were affected by layoffs.
It seems a significant number of the editorial staff were impacted based on some of the tweets. When asked for clarification, a GameStop representative declined to break down the number of layoffs by location or department.
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”I lost half of my family today,” Kimberley Wallace, features editor, tweeted Tuesday. “Just gutted. My job is okay, but please think of the talented people I worked with who were let go for writing opportunities and open positions.”
For GameStop, the retail giant behind Game Informer, this incident is one more signal of the company’s struggle to stay afloat. After its stock prices dipped below $4 earlier this month, the company continued to show signs that it is desperately trying to find a foothold in the retail market. The stock closed at $3.42 on Tuesday, and GameStop is down 74% since the start of this year.
I reached out to GameStop for a comment, which provided the following statement:
”As part of the previously announced GameStop Reboot initiative to transform our business for the future and improve our financial performance, we can confirm a workforce reduction was implemented impacting more than 120 corporate staff positions, representing approximately 14% of our total associate base at our company headquarters as well as at some other offices. While these changes are difficult, they were necessary to reduce costs and better align the organization with our efforts to optimize the business to meet our future objectives and success factors. We recognize that this is a difficult day for our company and particularly for those associates impacted. We appreciate their dedication and service to GameStop and are committed to supporting them during this time of transition.”
Update, 8/23/2019: Game Informer editor in chief Andy McNamara clarified in a post that seven out of the 38-person Game Informer team (which includes more than editorial staff) were laid off on Tuesday.
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