May 28, 2022

Why Reggie Fils-Aime Was Hired by Gamestop

Former President of Nintendo of America, Reggie Fils-Aime, has been hired to GameStop’s board of directors. The news comes during GameStops fourth year of financial decline.

Gamestop announced the hiring today via their website. Though the news may come strange to some – given that Reggie seemed to have retired after departing NoA in April 2019 – it makes perfect sense for the struggling games retailer.

His Body Is Ready

Fils-Aime is notable for leading Nintendo’s meteoric success in 21st Century America with the Nintendo DS, Wii, and Switch. These consoles – particularly the Wii – became staples of the modern family household. In other words, Fils-Aime is the reason your mum refers to any video game console as “The Nintendo”.

However, it’s worth remembering that this era of success came after Nintendo’s market dominance started to slip with the Nintendo 64 and Gamecube. Fils-Aime joined NoA in late 2003, midway through the Gamecube’s lifetime, and had made it to President in 2006, just in time for the launch of the Wii. Reggie helped Nintendo rise from the ashes in an era when it seemed the former video games giant had fallen from grace.

In 2003, many wondered if Nintendo even held a place in the modern market. By 2010, 1 in 3 British households owned a Wii.

Reggie joins Gamestop as it finds itself in a similar position in 2020 as Nintendo did in 2003. The former retailer giant has been scrambling to find a new identity as digital downloads and games-on-demand subscription services become the new norm. Many are wondering how – or even if – Gamestop can compete. Several of their Oklahoma stores recently trialled an overhaul in which their traditional layout had been replaced by “social gaming spaces”. Reactions were… mixed, to say the least.

It’s time for Reggie to do his thing. Is Gamestops body ready?

Fils-Aime joins former Walmart and PetSmart CEO’s William Simon and James Symancyk, who were also appointed to the board of directors in the same announcement.

“The board refreshment and governance enhancements announced today represent an important milestone in GameStop’s transformation as we continue to evolve the company’s business strategy for long-term success. We are pleased to welcome Reggie, Bill, and J.K. to the board. They are each highly qualified and bring significant, relevant experience to our turnaround. We look forward to immediately benefitting from their expertise and perspectives as we navigate the evolving gaming and retail environments, execute on our strategic initiatives and prepare the Company to maximize value-creation associated with the next generation of console launches later this year.”

Reggie then confirmed the announcement via his Twitter.

Considering Reggie had seemingly left Nintendo to retire, many are speculating that this is a labour of love for the businessman. It’s possible Fils-Aime wants to save a former valued partner from his career heyday.


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