Matt Furlong, Veteran E-Commerce Leader and Technology Industry Executive, Appointed CEO

Mike Recupero, Seasoned Technology Industry Finance Executive, Appointed CFO

GameStop Corp. today announced that it has appointed Matt Furlong as Chief Executive Officer and Mike Recupero as Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Furlong and Mr. Recupero join from Amazon, where they each held senior roles and oversaw various growth initiatives during their respective tenures. 

Matt Furlong, Incoming Ceo

Mr. Furlong is a veteran e-commerce leader with significant experience implementing growth strategies across global geographies and product categories. Most recently, he was a Country Leader and oversaw Amazon’s Australia business during a period of substantial growth. He was previously a Technical Advisor to the head of Amazon’s North America Consumer business. Throughout his nearly nine years at Amazon, he also ran a variety of product categories and oversaw strong market share expansion. Mr. Furlong began his career at Procter & Gamble, where he was an executive focused on brand, marketing and sales strategies.

Mike Recupero, Incoming CFO

Mr. Recupero is a seasoned technology industry finance executive, who spent more than 17 years at Amazon supporting growth across global geographies and product categories. He most recently served as Chief Financial Officer of the North American Consumer business after serving as Chief Financial Officer of Prime Video. He previously served as the Chief Financial Officer of the European Consumer business. He began his career at Amazon, holding Analyst, Manager and Director roles of increasing responsibility.   

Start Dates

These appointments reflect the refreshed Board’s focus on building a technology company and investing in growth. Mr. Furlong’s start date is June 21, 2021 and Mr. Recupero’s start date is July 12, 2021.

Source: GameStop Newsroom

The 2021 GameStop Annual Shareholder Meeting has officially concluded, setting the stage for Q1 2021 Earnings at market close and the proceeding conference call at 5:00pm EST.

From 11:00am to 11:15am at 625 Westport Parkway, Grapevine, Texas, the gaming retailer’s board worked to confirm new nominees such as Larry Cheng, the first investor in Chewy and a mentor to Ryan Cohen.

Ryan Cohen, now officially chairman of the board, gave a speech via Zoom to the crowd of over 200 shareholders. GMEdd has transcribed the speech, available below.

Ryan Cohen’s Speech

…We ushered in a whole new era of GameStop. On a personal note, I want you to know I’m humbled to be elected to your board and serve as your Chairman. We have a lot of work in front of us, and it will take time.

We’re trying to do something that nobody in the retail space has ever done but we believe we’re putting the right pieces in place and we have clear goals: delighting customers and driving shareholder value for the longterm. The management team and refreshed board will remain totally focused on
these goals at all times.

We know some people want us to lay out a whole detailed plan today, but that’s not gonna happen. You won’t find us talking a big game, making a bunch of lofty promises, or telegraphing our strategy to the competition. That’s the philosophy we adopted at Chewy.

Here are a few things we’ve done so far: refresh the board, added technology and retail experience to the leadership team, paid off all our long term debt and strengthened the balance sheet, and begun laying the foundation for long term growth.

Moving forward, we want you to judge GameStop based on our actions, not our words. Thank you everyone, and as my dad would say, “buckle up.”

In an effort to give investors their Cohen-fix, Ryan spoke about the progress his team has made at GameStop.

Twitter update

Ryan Cohen has since changed his Twitter bio, proudly representing his new role at GameStop alongside his past at Chewy.

Now, investors eagerly await the Q1 2021 Earnings release, supplemental presentation, and conference call.

Source: gmegang1 on Twitter (photo), Ryan Cohen on Twitter

At 12:39 PM ET, Ryan Cohen has tweeted once again. This time, it’s a photo of a SEARS big-box retail store being torn down for good.

On the surface, parallels can be drawn between Sears’ rise and fall through an unchanged retail experience and GameStop’s past, but speculators have begun to dig deeper and look for hidden meaning in the tweet.

The Origin

The photo originates from an article titled Former Sears Demolition Begins in Uptown District to Make Way for New Innovation Community Development in the Tampa Innovation paper. We already know GameStop is likely cementing themselves in Florida, but this information alone is not enough to substantiate a connection.

The article from January 15th, 2020 goes on to state:

 This urban renewal project… will shift from the property’s traditional retail origin and fully leverage the Innovation Community potential driven by its world-class, academic, scientific, and technology neighbors.

Sounds familiar.

Chewy Parallels

What is also striking is that Ryan Cohen and Chewy are no strangers to reimagining old Sears stores, as seen through Kelli Durkin’s retweet of a 2018 article by Bizjournals.

In a move emblematic of the retail industry’s seismic shift, Chewy – an e-commerce platform for pet products – has opened a customer service facility in what was once a Sears and a Woolworth’s.

Chewy opened up their premier customer service facility in a former Sears, a “Sign of the times”Mayor Josh Levystated. Is it possible that GameStop has begun to open their new South Florida customer service facility, and Ryan Cohen is paying homage to when he turned a Sears into a center for Chewy?

SEC Form ARS

Investors have also speculated that the final remaining letters on the SEARS logo, ‘ARS’, could reference the SEC Form ARS. Security & Exchange Commission (SEC) Form ARS, or the Annual Report to Shareholders, is a document used by a public company to report its latest financial performance to its shareholders shortly before its annual shareholders’ meeting.

 As revealed as early as Q4 2020 earnings and confirmed yesterday, GameStop’s annual shareholders’ meeting is on Wednesday, June 9th. While this is an uncanny coincidence, GameStop has long replaced the considerably less informative Form ARS with the more comprehensive Form 10-K, so this would have to be released in conjunction.

In GameStop’s Fourth Quarter and Fiscal 2020 Results News Release, the Company revealed that they intend to “modify its method of communicating its quarterly financial results.” In a move similar to Chewy, GameStop announces that future financial results will accompanied by a presentation to include detailed supplemental highlights. Could this be the Form ARS the incoming GameStop Chairman may be referencing?

Let us know your thoughts in the comments and in the GMEdd.com Discord Server.

Sources: Ryan Cohen on Twitter, Tampainnovation.com, SBFJ Venture on Twitter, Investopedia, GameStop News Release

At the conclusion of a highly volatile day for NYSE:GME, GameStop Corp. today announced that it will report first quarter fiscal 2021 earnings results after the market closes on Wednesday, June 9, 2021

investor conference call

The Company will host an investor conference call at 5:00 pm ET on the same day to review the company’s financial results. The call and any supplemental information can be accessed at GameStop Corp.’s investor relations home page at Investor.GameStop.com. The phone number for the investor conference call is 877-451-6152 and the confirmation code is 13720011. The conference call will be archived for two months on GameStop’s corporate website.

Annual Shareholders Meeting

GameStop has also confirmed that its Annual Shareholders Meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, June 9, 2021 at 625 Westport Parkway, Grapevine, Texas. The meeting, which is not open to the media and requires shareholders to provide proof of ownership and valid identification, is expected to take place at 11:00am ET and conclude at 11:15am ET. Chief Executive Officer and director George Sherman will attend the meeting in-person with the remainder of the Board of Directors attending virtually.

Source: GameStop Newsroom

On April 16th, 2021, retail’s investing icon Roaring Kitty, made famous for his massive bets on GameStop alongside his past YouTube streams, bid farewell to his cat-themed online persona. That is, until now.

At 10:00am EST, Roaring Kitty has shocked the world and tweeted once again.

Returning to Twitter in epic style, the GameStop investor shared a video of a dimly lit cat perched up on a ledge, potentially suggesting something grand is upon us. The video is paired with the song Carmina Curana-O Fortuna by Hugues Reiner; a track that is sure to make for an intense build-up.

Some fans of the trader, who is not a cat, claim to have encountered issues playing the video, so GMEdd.com has uploaded it here  in case of concern.

Will Roaring Kitty stick around? Or was this tweet just to let us know he’s still watching? 

Source: Roaring Kitty on Twitter

As the Chewification of GameStop continues, perhaps investors should take a closer look at the other Chewy co-founder Michael “Blake” Day and the potential for him to be involved, alongside Volition Capital.

Since reaching an agreement between RC Ventures and GameStop in January, Ryan Cohen has worked almost entirely behind-the-scenes on transforming the retailer, with investors uncertain as to who he consults with towards strategic moves. By looking at Cohen’s past, and the breadcrumbs along the way, GMEdd is able to make a few educated guesses.

Chewy’s “Other” Co-Founder

Chewy.com was founded in 2011 by Ryan Cohen and Michael “Blake” Day, hereby referred to as Blake. We know enough about Ryan’s past from the various interviews he has given recalling his time at the pet-focused E-commerce giant, however, we don’t know much about the other founder, Blake. Could he also be involved in the GameStop story?

Blake does not leave much of a trail on the internet. He has a Facebook page, but it doesn’t have a public profile picture. It doesn’t look like he’s on Twitter or Instagram. He does have a LinkedIn page.

Blake’s LinkedIn shows that he was Co-Founder & CTO of Chewy until April 2018, just a month after it was announced Ryan Cohen would be stepping down as CEO. Both Blake and Ryan remained with the company for a year after a $3B payday from PetSmart in 2017.

From past interviews with Ryan Cohen, we know the founders first met through an online Java chat room and shared similar visions for a groundbreaking e-commerce business before starting Chewy.com together, but insight on Blake remains limited beyond this.

In a TechCrunch interview in 2019, Ryan Cohen was asked,

Would you partner again with Michael on a different e-commerce business or maybe a venture outfit?

to which Ryan Cohen responded,

We’re really close. It needs to be the right opportunity obviously, and we need to be picky. But I have no plans to sit in retirement, that’s for sure. I’m 33 and I’m competitive and I like consumer businesses and I like to win.

Ryan is arguably in the midst of his biggest venture yet, so you have to wonder what his former business partner is up to these days.

Back to Blake’s LinkedIn page: The last activity on his account was a liked post from 4 years ago, when Blake still worked for Chewy… until 4 months ago when Blake liked a post sharing a Forbes article about Chewy’s exceptional customer service, dated none other than January 29th, 2021.

Interestingly enough, January 28th was the day buying of NYSE:GME was restricted across several major brokerages including Robinhood. During this time, GameStop was all over the news. Blake knows how to lay low, as indicated by so little out there on the internet about him, but if anything, this recent activity shows he is still using LinkedIn, and coincidentally while one of his former cohorts is at the center of a historical financial market controversy.

Despite Chewy’s headquarters being based in Florida, the company established a small team based in Boston, beginning in temporary spaces before leasing their own 20,000 square foot space in 2017. According to Cohen, Boston was an attractive location to poach tech talent:

Boston is an amazing technology hub and startup hub, with dozens of universities. There’s just a ton of talent. We looked at all of the major US cities when we were planning this office, and Boston was the most competitive — either equal to or better than anywhere else.

Blake Day, serving as the CTO, ran the Boston location. He gave an interview to VentureFizz about the move to Boston, and one might say he sounds a lot like Cohen:

Samantha Rassner served as Chewy’s Vice President of Software Development from September 2015 to February 2018. In a LinkedIn blog post on her exit of the company, Samantha Rassner recounts Blake’s visionary speech. Blake and Ryan sound one and the same here as well.

Chewy’s First Investor

Larry Cheng, co-founder and managing partner of Volition Capital, was the first major investor to back Chewy after the company was turned down numerous times by other firms.

Larry’s investment through Volition was key to the growth and expansion of the company, and as a result, Larry and Ryan remain “fast friends.” While GameStop is a different story than Chewy,  it’s not crazy to think that Volition Capital and Larry Cheng have long been involved in mentoring the turnaround based on these facts alone.

In fact, when Ryan Cohen tweeted a picture of an ice cream cone on February 24, 2021, some drew the connection that it could refer to Volition Capital’s website citing Chewy’s first official board meeting including McDonald’s soft serve. 

Who else would have been present at the first official board meeting? The Co-Founder of course, Blake Day.

Timelines Suggest Volition was Clued in on Ryan’s Plans

Ryan Cohen filed his first 13D for GameStop via RC Ventures LLC on August 28, 2020, disclosing an initial 9% stake. This sparked waves, particularly within value investor circles, as many pondered the E-commerce guru’s investment motives.

What few realize is that Cohen didn’t initially invest in August 2020, but much earlier in April 2019. This can be deduced from the initial 13D, through share counts and averages based on implied price. Rod Alzmann of GMEdd.com states that when he inquired with GameStop last year, investor relations confirmed that Cohen had held $GME since April 2019. 

Just one week after Ryan’s public disclosure, on September 4th, 2020, Volition Capital published an insight piece titled Gaming as a Service and Why it Matters, authored by one of the firm’s associates, Claude de Jocas. This also appears to be the first piece of gaming related research the firm has released.

Over the next few weeks, Ryan added to his position twice more until reaching a 9.98% stake, disclosed September 21. Weeks later, on October 9, Volition released a video where Claude de Jocas discusses the future of internet gaming and its growth potential.

Skip ahead just one month, and on November 17, Ryan filed an amendment to his 13D with an attached letter to the GameStop board urging the company to share a credible plan for seizing opportunities in the rapidly growing gaming sector.

PR Blitz

Ryan Cohen was far from being a household name in August of 2020 when he filed his initial stake in GameStop, so many investors started researching him to get a feel for what his plan was. At the time, Ryan had established a website, ryan-cohen.com, that embedded various media appearances and formal interviews the Chewy co-founder had given, but it has since been shut down in December of 2020.

Had the website done its job? 

Retail investing icon Roaring Kitty first stumbles upon Ryan Cohen’s rudimentary homepage during an August 28th, 2020 livestream.  At the time, the deep value investor was merely trying to learn more about the Chewy founder. Most of the content was posted on the site between mid-2019, around Chewy’s IPO and Cohen’s initial GameStop investment, and mid-2020.

Investors could speculate that this may have been a coordinated PR blitz campaign before revealing a large stake in a public company, one that he had already been discreetly acquiring.

Each interview Cohen conducted provided valuable insight into his business strategy, and much of how he described Chewy’s story and his vision could also be applied to GameStop. Was this intentional? In one September 2019 post on Medium, when asked about what’s next, Ryan hinted at something being on the horizon.

I’m only 34, so I certainly haven’t peaked as an entrepreneur yet. Stay tuned.

For more, check out GMEdd.com/report-model for a compiled model featuring all of Ryan Cohen’s known media appearances and formal interviews.

Okay, where were we? Ryan Cohen started buying into GameStop in April of 2019, with a disclosure following increased holdings in August 2020. It’s unknown as to when he made the decision and how much time was spent beforehand figuring out activist investor logistics coinciding with a PR blitz, but it is reasonable to assume he was strategically building public-facing credibility for himself before revealing his high-stakes investment.

Fast-forward to 2021 and Ryan Cohen now owns 12.9% of GameStop, joins the board, a proclaimed short squeeze event arises national coverage on the retailer prompting a series of congressional hearings, and suddenly everyone knows about r/wallstreetbets.

Amid all of this attention, the company remains quiet but starts undergoing rapid transformation, which was initially visible from the Investor Relations page, but now only seen through activity on LinkedIn — there have been over 30 new hires in tech and E-commerce positions starting in February, just a month after Cohen joined the GameStop board.

Strategic Advisory

On March 2nd, 2021, Volition Capital launched a new Strategic Advisory Board that, “will provide focused guidance to the firm and its portfolio companies regarding strategic direction, investments, executive hiring and development, due-diligence, network and operational strategy, among other areas.” Volition states that the firm had been working on assembling this board for almost a year.

So a venture firm launched a strategic advisory board. Who cares?

Wait, that name is familiar…

That’s right. As of March 2021, Blake is now at the helm of Volition’s Strategic Advisory Board. Blake has largely laid low since his Chewy departure and still lives in Fort Lauderdale according to his Volition Capital bio.

This appears to be the first public role he has taken since leaving Chewy in 2018. Cohencidence?

Volition’s second listed Strategic Advisory Board Member is Raul Fernandez, who serves as Vice Chairman and Owner of Monumental Sports & Entertainment, which is a private partnership of Washington DC’s major sports franchises including eSports teams.

Early GameStop investors will recognize Raul’s name, because they will have seen it before as well.

GameStop’s May 2020 “Driving Value For All Stockholders” notes that Raul Fernandez serves on GameStop’s board to provide insight into the world of professional eSports on slide 32. 

GameStop claims that Raul Fernandez was appointed to the board  under an agreement with Hestia Capital Partners, L.P. (“Hestia Capital”) and Permit Capital Enterprise Fund, L.P.  (“Permit Capital”), lead by currently outgoing GameStop director and atypical shareholder activist Kurt Wolf.

Hestia Capital and Permit Capital, together with their affiliates, beneficially owned approximately 1.3% of GameStop at this point, and Kurt Wolf, as their Managing Partner, had just sent a letter to GameStop’s board calling for a corporate refresh.

Wolf had been advocating for GameStop’s board to adapt to the times and transform from an underperforming retailer into a forward-thinking company that emphasized long-term growth. He later insists that Raul was placed on the board without any involvement or communication with Permit/Hestia in a May 2020 Restore GameStop presentation deck.

While the GameStop board claimed they began to cooperate with Hestia/Permit in April of 2019, Ryan Cohen began purchasing his initial position in the gaming retailer.

Fernandez still currently serves on GameStop’s board, and filings reveal he will be stepping down at the Annual General Meeting on June 9th, as Ryan Cohen takes the reigns as incoming Chairman of the Board. 

On April 8th, 2021, just one month after Blake and Raul’s appointment to Volition’s Strategic Advisory Board, GameStop announced Larry Cheng from Volition Capital as a candidate for its board of directors for the company’s upcoming annual meeting .

What now?

There’s no denying that GameStop and Volition could be tied together in some way. Larry Cheng, Volition’s Managing Partner, will likely be granted his seat on GameStop’s board in June, and we wouldn’t be surprised to see Blake come out of secrecy in the future as well. 

The big question remains: What are these guys planning?

Jenna guest wrote this article exclusively for GMEdd, Toast edited and contributed

Sources: Chewy on Crunchbase, Michael Day on LinkedIn, Vox, TechCrunch, Forbes, BostonGlobe, VentureFizz, inc.com, Samantha Rassner on LinkedIn, Larry Cheng Profile at Volition Capital, Chewy’s Portfolio at Volition Capital, Ryan Cohen on Twitter, Volition Capital Vimeo, Wayback MachineSEC Report, Volition Capital Vimeo, RC Ventures Letter to the Board, Medium, Volition Capital, Investor.GameStop.com, GameStop News Release, GameStop News Release

The Incoming Chairman of GameStop has tweeted once again.

At 9:41 PM EST on May 28, 2021, Ryan Cohen shared a gravestone generated at tombstonebuilder.com stating his apparent demise.

RYAN COHEN
R.I.P. DUMB ASS

Ryan Cohen would not have been able to send out this tweet if he had truly passed, so we are lead to believe he’s sending a message, whether it be for laughs or discreet communication.

By using the same website used by Ryan, GMEdd was able to determine that Cohen did not enter his name in the slot that says “Some Name”. He entered his name in the slot that says messages. It is not his tombstone, but he is potentially sending a message.

Speculative investors were quick to point out an uncanny coincidence relating Ryan Cohen’s tombstone to a term used in the financial industry.

tombstone is a type of print notice that is most often used in the financial industry to formally announce a particular transaction, such as an initial public offering or placement of stock of a company.

Some believe that this could have been Ryan Cohen’s under-the-radar announcement of a finalized merger or acquisition, something that GMEdd has previously described as in the realm of possibility since GameStop has paid off their long-term debt.

Could GameStop be merging with RC Ventures?  This would potentially result in a new CUSIP for GameStop Corp., leaving remaining shorts needing to be covered before a deadline date so all outstanding shares can be traded from NYSE:GME to the new CUSIP. This is unlikely, but an interesting theory that may wrinkle your brain.

The fundamental investors at GMEdd are really hoping that GameStop has a great strategic acquisition in place that will help transform the brick-and-mortar retailer into the technology company that the Form 10-k announced it would become in March, and that it has hired for.

Source: Ryan Cohen on Twitter, Wikipedia

Found due to internet sleuths, NFT.GameStop.com unveils what will become GameStop’s venture into the rapidly growing crypto and non-fungible token space.

GMEdd.com covered in April how GameStop was beginning to look for talent in this sector, and it is now official.

The website, although minimal, asks for those interested in working on the project to reach out. 

GameStop looks to be working with Ethereum’s chain for this project, judging by their usage of the Ethereum logo.

A potential slogan for the project is also unveiled:

Power to the players.
Power to the creators.
Power to the collectors.

There is also a crypto wallet address listed on the site, featuring the gamer code “1337.” The address begins with 1337420.

0x13374200c29C757FDCc72F15Da98fb94f286d71e

Etherscan.io reveals that this address is associated with a GameStop Token, and also features an ascii-art message for those “anons” who took the time to look it up.

Within the source code, on line 936, the launch date of GameStop Token is revealed, in unicode: 1626261600

This indicates that GameStop token has a public launch date of July 14th, 2021, at 4:20 AM PT.

Etherscan.io also reveals that the first GameStop Token was minted only 28 minutes after Ryan Cohen’s American Dad .gif tweet last night. A total of .42069 ETH was transferred to a multisignature wallet contract, which is a way of setting up a wallet that may need more than one signature to authorize transactions.

{ 
"description": "Gamestop NFT", 
"external_url": "nft.gamestop.com",
 "image": "ipfs://QmaLEchFaE7FWhc4MCvYMqoTdK8rV1yfjEC5Bz4jzQRbjS",
 "name": "Gamestop NFT" 
}

Engineers and nerds alike have discovered that GameStop is hosting this webpage on IPFS, an incredibly forward-thinking initiative for the company. IPFS is essentially a decentralized internet, which protects developers from single-point-of-failure risks. You can read more on it here on ipfs.io. 

Christopher Bell, GameStop’s Senior Product Manager, Blockchain & Smart Contracts, has announced that he’s happy to be a part of the NFTeam at GameStop. 

Power to the Players!

Hidden in the top right of the webpage is a dead pixel that links to a game reminiscent of the dinosaur jumping game from Google Chrome, but this time it’s a banyana, a cat in a banana. This is likely a nod to Roaring Kitty and the “ape” movement.

In the game, the further you progress, the closer you arrive to a full moon in the sky.

Source: GameStop NFT, Etherscan.io


June 2nd 2021 Editorial Update:  Clarification on the first GameStop Token transaction.

Ryan Cohen has tweeted once again. 

Revealing yet another comedy interest, the tweet features a .gif from a scene in American Dad. In the .gif, the character Steve is saved from drowning by floating up through something rising in his shorts.

Shortly after the scene in the .gif from American Dad! Season 11 Episode 2, The Life Aquatic with Steve Smith, Steve says, “I’m better than okay. It took me being underwater to finally see things clearly.” The scene can be watched here.

The tweet’s caption works to cover Cohen legally, just in case anyone wants to attempt it.

Don’t try this at home

Some investors and tinfoil-hatters speculate that the caption, combined with the .gif,  could be in reference to GameStop’s rising value.

“Don’t use your shorts to get out from underwater”

Share your theories on what the tweet could signify in the comments and on the GMEdd Discord server.

The “hiring frenzy” first coined by GameStop VP, Marketing Evan Smith in a Feb 2021 LinkedIn post highlighted by GMEdd.com has progressed, revealing GameStop’s success in acquiring new talent at a rate that can be compared to the likes of the hottest new startup.

According to LinkedIn data, since the appointment of GameStop CTO Matt Francis in February, we count over 30 new hires who bring experience from a cross section of high growth e-commerce stars Chewy, Amazon, Zulily and Arteza.

The rate appears to be accelerating, with new ex-tech hires in May so far exceeding April and March.

An opportunity too good to pass up

Digging deeper, we can discover some motivations as to what would compel someone to make such a career move. Skyler Ramirez, an Amazon veteran of 8 years, left his most recent Data Engineering Leader position at Facebook after just 9 months to jump ship to GameStop.

In a post via LinkedIn the Vice President informed his connections that it was extremely hard to say goodbye to Facebook, but “sometimes a new opportunity comes along that is too good to pass up.” Ramirez also shared he will be hiring several roles on his team as soon as next week.

Ramirez’s new role of VP, Instock at GameStop is not yet defined on his profile, but his personal About section provides some insight as to his experience and skillset.

A versatile leader with over a decade of post-graduate experience leading business, product, and technical (including big data) teamsA problem-solver who takes on work others view as too hard or too risky, and drives hundreds of millions of dollars in growth and savings. A builder who uses high judgement and analytics to take products and initiatives from concept to execution and set them up for long-term success.

For ex-Amazon turned GameStop Chief Growth Officer Elliott Wilke, part of the appeal of working at GameStop was revealed commenting that he has put his corporate blazer “back in the closet for good” while posing in a snappy new GameStop branded hoodie in a recently updated LinkedIn profile photo.

The changing of the guard is not limited to new appointments, with departures going beyond the high profile Executive Vice President group. GameStop Chief Digital Officer, Dhritiman Saha left in April after just over a year in the role further suggesting GameStop’s new direction in this area.

Proprietary Brands to fuel further growth

As well as the developments taking place in E-Commerce, Logistics and Customer Service, this new direction seems to include a focus on Private Label with GameStop Vice President of Private Label and Global Sourcing, Kevin Kennedy leaving Chewy in April to take on this new role.

Chewy revealed in their Q4 and Fiscal Year 2020 Letter to Shareholders they achieved gross margin improvements driven by greater penetration rates into higher-margin verticals such as proprietary brands which doubled year over year.

We can infer that GameStop intends to follow a similar path of Chewy and develop in-house brands with higher margins and less dependencies on third parties as just one more contributing part to their ongoing transformation.

What to make of it all

Tech and E-Commerce executives looking to be a part of something are leaving blue-chips in droves to fulfill Cohen’s vision. The public has not yet been made informed exactly what the roadmap entails, but this level of excitement amongst new hires is unmatched. 

GameStop is gearing up for a transformation that will be studied in universities for years to come.

The Data

When Ryan Cohen was asked how he finds his management teams during a 2018 Miami Herald interview, he gave his endorsement for LinkedIn.

We use a special proprietary tool called LinkedIn and we look for people with very relevant experience at companies we respect and we shoot them a message. … We hand-picked these people. They are the best of the best, the Navy Seals of management teams.

While Amazon and Chewy may be household names, Arteza is the leading direct to consumer arts & crafts supplies brand offering art enthusiasts and hobbyists high quality supplies at affordable price points across a variety of categories. Larry Cheng, one of GameStop’s incoming board members, invested in the startup, just as he did Chewy when Ryan Cohen approached him.

It appears that GameStop has replaced Arteza as a destination of choice, with many who moved from Chewy to Arteza to join Kelli Durkin, GameStop’s Senior Vice President, Customer Service and former Arteza CXO, following her yet again from Arteza to GameStop.

GMEdd has sourced the employment information using the very techniques Ryan Cohen is known to use in his own headhunting. Check out our data below and visit our Report and Models page for the latest updates.

vestro guest wrote this article exclusively for GMEdd, Toast contributed

Sources: GameStop Corp. on LinkedIn, Volition Capital, Chewy Investor Relations


June 1st 2021 Editorial Update: Visit GMEdd.com/report-model  to view a continuously updated model for GameStop Corp.’s LinkedIn hires.