Wal-Mart to buy and sell used video games
The king of retail will sell games, hardware and even used DVDs at 5 test locations.
Wal-Mart (WMT) is looking to jump back into the used PlayStation, Wii and Xbox business.
Specifically, Wal-Mart has entered into a lease agreement with a small retailer called Game Trade to test used-video-game sales, buybacks and trade-ins in five stores.
This isn’t the retail king’s first foray into the used video-game business -- but there are a few reasons to think this venture may succeed where others failed.
First, Wal-Mart kind of halfheartedly jumped into used game retailing in early 2009. The store stuck 77 kiosks in its stores that scanned a used video game's bar code and then added a credit to the customer's credit card. The problems with that are obvious -- not the least of which is the fact that many gamers trash their original packaging and are left with just a software disc and no bar code.
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Second, Wal-Mart is going whole hog with the resale of hardware as well as software, and is even going to offer the resale of DVDs and Blu-Ray discs. Post continues after video:
A recent Newzoo Games Market Report estimates that a full 46% of video-game sales involve used software, meaning this is an incredibly lucrative segment of the $25 billion market.
There are, of course, a few obstacles. Gamestop (GME) is a clear leader in the industry and won’t be unseated easily. Another difficulty is that video game sales in general aren’t as strong as they once were.
But who knows -- Wal-Mart may have learned from its previous venture and see success in test markets. If so, expect to see used video games on sale at a Supercenter near you later this year.
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The solid report comes a month after the retailer closed all of its Canadian operations.
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