Used Games Score Big for Retailer GameStop

Amid a devastating period for most retailers, video-game seller GameStop Corp. has posted big sales gains, in part by aggressively marketing used products to cash-strapped consumers.

GameStop this month reported a 22 percent jump in overall sales and a 10 percent increase in sales at stores open more than 12 months for the holiday sales period ended Jan. 3.

It didn't hurt that video-game sales climbed 9 percent in December to a record $5.3 billion, according to market research firm NPD Group.

GameStop's sales gains are particularly buoyant compared with other retailers that sell video games.

Best Buy Co., the nation's largest consumer electronics chain, said earlier this month that its sales of entertainment goods, including videogames, movies and music, plunged 12 percent in December from a year ago.

Best Buy's sales of videogame hardware and accessories fell by a "mid-single digits" percentage last month compared with the year before.

Circuit City Stores Inc., another retailer of consoles and games, last week announced it would liquidate its 567 stores by April.

GameStop, however, "significantly increased sales of both new and used games," said Daniel DeMatteo, chief executive of the Grapevine, Texas-based retailer in an interview.

Results for the final quarter are due in mid-March.

• Click here to read more of this story in the Wall Street Journal.

• Click here to visit's Video Gaming Center.