Struggling video game retailer GameStop fires CFO, announces layoffs

Company is reportedly planning turnaround.
A GameStop in San Rafael, Calif., Dec. 2021

GameStop, the national video game retailer that has been struggling to maintain a competitive edge for several years in a changing entertainment market, announced the firing of its chief financial officer this week and is reportedly planning a series of layoffs to help shore up its operations.

The company dismissed its CFO Mike Recupero on Thursday after only a year on the job, with an anonymous source telling CNBC that the executive was allegedly “not the right culture fit” and was “too hands off.”

The retailer, which has 10s of thousands of workers at around 4,500 locations worldwide, is also reportedly moving to begin employee layoffs as well. 

The company’s fortunes have declined steadily over the last several years as consumers gravitate toward digital and streaming forms of video game consumption and away from the traditional brick-and-mortar retail fronts that have dominated game sales for decades. 

GameStop also endured significant corporate embarrassment when it was the target of a “short squeeze” in 2021, a stock tactic in which a seller borrows a stock, sells it, then attempts to buy it back at a lower price, sell it back to the original lender and profit from the interest. 

GameStop’s stock prices skyrocketed to record highs during the short squeeze, though they eventually sharply declined and have continued to slowly decline ever since.