Jim Belanger brings more than 30 years of franchise experience to Gamer Doc, including serving as senior vice president of franchise development for Play N Trade video games and COO of Faces Cosmetics, Inc., where he directed U.S., Canadian and Mexican operations of franchises and company stores. He has also served as director of operations for Hickory Farms’ 1,100 stores, divisional vice president of Rent-A-Center where he managed 300 stores, and president of Rent Club, Inc., where he expanded the franchise to 100 stores in 12 states. He has also held executive positions with Baker’s Square, Burger King, Bally’s Tom Foolery and Sierra Tucson.
“People say that if consumers are down to their last $50, the last three things they’ll buy are milk, eggs and video games,” said Colin Sebastian, a video game industry analyst with Lazard Capital Markets. (New York Times April 29, 2008)
For many consumers, the purchase of a video game is justified by its entertainment value. For example, finishing Grand Theft Auto IV can take more than 40 hours, turning a $60 value (tax not included) into entertainment that costs less than 70 cents an hour (food and bathroom breaks not included). (Matt Richtel, New York Times April 29, 2008)
That helps to explain the mindset of the video game consumer – it’s not just a game but entertainment, at a great value. After you finish playing for 70 cents an hour, you can trade it in toward the purchase of new games!
According to the consumer retail research firm The NPD Group, the video game industry exploded in 2007, racking up an astonishing $17.9 billion in sales, an impressive 43% improvement over 2006.
As for 2008, you would never know that the U.S. economy was in distress by looking at the video game industry sales figures. Year-to-date growth is a solid 27% through March. Overall, total sales of hardware, software and accessories rose an impressive 57% year-over-year to $1.7 billion.
Video games are the hottest sector in retail, and Nintendo continues to dominate, as casual gaming continues to drive the market. Combined Wii and DS sales accounted for 58% of hardware sales in March.
The truly staggering fact about these eye-popping numbers that continue to defy traditional market predictions, projections and trends, is that only 33% of homes in America have a video game console. There is still a great upside opportunity for the industry as market penetration for consoles increases, and as more women and seniors become players.
Gamer Doc is a retail video game store franchise that buys, sells, trades and rents new and used video games, to take care of the entertainment needs of gamers across all age groups and interests, from hardcore enthusiasts to casual players.
We are bringing a new innovation to retail with our “interactive” customer experience. From our store design to customer service training, at Gamer Doc, the customer is in charge of their shopping experience. The store layout optimizes flow for each customer, whether it is their first time in a video game store or they are a store “champion” coming back to play in a tournament or pre-order a title.