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East Anglia Future 50

Fortnite helps to save profits at intu Chapelfield retailer

PUBLISHED: 10:06 21 March 2019 | UPDATED: 10:06 21 March 2019

Fortnite has saved retailer Game Digital from posting a poor set of results for the first half of the year. Picture: Neil Didsbury

Fortnite has saved retailer Game Digital from posting a poor set of results for the first half of the year. Picture: Neil Didsbury

Archant

Fortnite has saved retailer Game Digital from posting a poor set of results for the first half of the year.

The retailer has posted a drop in sales in the 26 weeks to January 26, a fall of 4.7% to £492.9m.

Sales of high-end accessories and licensed merchandise were boosted by Fortnite and other battle royale games, in a phenomenon the group said it anticipates replicating with the recently released Apex Legends.

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Game has two outlets in Norwich: one in the Chapelfield shopping centre and one in Back of the Inns.

It also has sites in King’s Lynn, Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft.

The continued downturn in pre-owned games has taken its toll on the group, while hardware sales were weaker amid tough competition.

The group took the decision to reduce the amount of promotional activity over Black Friday week, resulting in lower sales.

However pre-tax profits were up 20.3% to £14.8m.

The company said improved profitability was down to better margins and the delivery of £4.9m in cost savings.

Chief executive Martyn Gibbs said: “During the period the UK retail business delivered further efficiency improvements and achieved considerable cost savings across all areas including store operating and fixed costs, distribution and head office costs.

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“Our flexible lease profile gives us a unique opportunity to work closely with landlords to manage our store portfolio and we continue to deliver, and anticipate ongoing, rent reductions.”

The company is working to expand “Belong” — which is already in situ in Norwich — its leisure experience which allows shoppers to play games in store or watch competitions.

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