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Leaked GAME memo details EA problems, confirms no March stock

Retailer "won't sacrifice long-term credit requirements for short-term sales opportunities"

GAME won't be stocking Mass Effect 3 or any other EA games in March following the release of SSX this Friday.

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The news was confirmed in a leaked memo sent to staff today by GAME Group northern Europe MD Tom Devine. It was obtained by IGN and transcribed by Edge. Here's the full text:

Dear all,

Last week we held an event for our partners in the industry and explained the challenges we are facing in the short term - and we asked for their support.

We asked them to trade with us using manageable credit terms, and for them to continue to do that whilst we work through the strategic review and refinancing of our business.

We gave the industry commitments - we committed to integrity and openness in our dealings, and working with everyone equally.

We committed to only stocking products on which we could get the right credit terms, regardless of the title or the supplier. We will not stock products if the terms are not right for our business - we will not sacrifice long-term credit requirements for short-term sales opportunities.

As a result of us taking this position - a position that we believe is critical to our long-term health as a business - we have taken the very difficult decision to not stock EA's March releases, including Mass Effect 3.

As a specialist retailer dedicated to games and gaming, it is never easy to make a decision not to stock a title, particularly one with such a strong fanbase. But it is imperative that we treat every supplier evenly, that we stick to our commitments, and that we don't sign up to payment terms that will hamper us further in the future.

It is even more critical that we manage this appropriately with our loyal customers. We know they will be disappointed regarding Mass Effect in particular and in recognition of this, we will be contacting our Mass Effect pre-order customers and as a gesture of goodwill we will be offering them £5 of reward card / elite points.

I know that many of you will have to manage customer and supplier feedback directly, and I would like to thank you in advance for your support and am happy to answer any questions you have directly - just grab me as I walk around.

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