The gaming company has shifted its focus away from cryptocurrency but appears to be moving forward with its NFT and blockchain plans.
After incurring $94.7 million in net losses in the third quarter and laying off staff from its digital assets department, gaming retailer GameStop has announced that it will no longer focus any efforts on cryptocurrencies.
On a December 7 earnings call, GameStop CEO Matt Furlong stated that the company “proactively minimized exposure to cryptocurrency” this year and “does not currently hold a material balance of any token,” adding:
“Although we continue to believe that digital assets have long-term potential in the gaming world, we have not and will not risk meaningful stockholder capital in this space.”
Earlier this year, the company stated that it was considering crypto, as well as nonfungible tokens (NFTs) and Web3 applications, as potential growth areas, calling these areas “increasingly relevant for gamers of the future.”
In the future, the emphasis will shift to collectibles, gaming, and pre-owned items.
Its moves in the NFT space appear to be continuing, as it states in a December 7 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it is “also pursuing, and will continue to pursue, other business and strategic initiatives associated with digital assets and blockchain technology” (SEC).
Cointelegraph reached out to GameStop to confirm that it would continue to work on its NFT marketplace, but received no response.
GameStop has pushed a number of Web3-related products, the most recent being its NFT marketplace, which went live on ImmutableX, an Ethereum layer-2 blockchain, on Oct. 31 after a public beta in July.
Prior to its NFT marketplace, the company in March launched a beta self-custody crypto wallet and beta NFT marketplace on Loopring, another Ethereum-based layer-2 protocol.
In September, it also partnered with the now-bankrupt crypto exchange FTX US to bring more customers to crypto and collaborate on e-commerce and online marketing initiatives. It severed ties with the exchange on November 11, shortly after declaring bankruptcy.
Its losses in the third quarter narrowed slightly compared to the second quarter, when it lost $108.7 million. It’s also a year-on-year improvement for GameStop, which lost $105.4 million in the third quarter of 2021.
Furlong confirmed in the earnings call that GameStop laid off multiple employees in its third round of layoffs for 2022 on December 5.
Earlier reports indicated that the team working on the company’s blockchain and NFT projects would be the hardest hit; however, Furlong did not specify where the staff cuts would be concentrated during the call.
Earlier posts by people claiming to be former employees shed some light on the situation. Daniel Williams, the lead software engineer at GameStop, wrote on LinkedIn on December 5:
“Another large round of layoffs at GameStop is currently underway… E-commerce Product and Engineers… “A lot of them.”