Sorry, Hot Topic, GameStop Owns ThinkGeek Now

Illustration for article titled Sorry, Hot Topic, GameStop Owns ThinkGeek Now

Well, this is awkward. Mere days after Hot Topic announced its plans to buy ThinkGeek for $122 million, the nerdy online retailer called the deal off. What’s the deal? Well, it turns out GameStop wanted to pay $18 million more.

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The last minute reversal is a bit of a shock, but selling to GameStop makes about as much sense as selling to Hot Topic: both stores are recognizable, popular retail environment with naturally geeky clientele. I personally thought Hot Topic was a better cultural fit, but ThinkGeeks’ unique, exclusive products will fit in just as well at GameStop.

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So, what now? We wait. GameStop plan to use ThinkGeek’s portfolio to sell more collectibles, extend its “multichannel retail expertise” and leverage ThinkGeek’s portfolio to score more “hard-to-secure” licensing agreements—but it’s not clear what that means for ThinkGeek as the online retailer we know and love today. Will it be folded into the GameStop brand and shuttered? Will it merely be a provider of whimsical sidelines for GameStop retail stores? Will ThinkGeek suddenly be GameStop’s new face of online game sales? It’s too early to say.

It’s not too early to speculate. See that comment section below? Go nuts.

[GameStop]

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DISCUSSION

UnfriendlyMoose
UnfriendlyMoose

I’m not sure it would be more advantageous to ThinkGeek to sell out to GameStop over Hot Topic as they both are “niche” stores in my mind.

I loved Hot Topic but a surprising amount of people assume it is a “Gothic/Emo” store and never enter. Also the majority of GameStops I have visited just don’t have the floor space to sell a lot of the merchandise that ThinkGeek sells.

I can’t help but think FYE or Barnes & Noble would be a better fit.