Another Change at the Top for GameStop

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Just three months ago, GameStop Corp. (NYSE: GME) appointed Michael Mauler as its new chief executive officer. Friday morning, Mauler unexpectedly resigned the post and was replaced on an interim basis by former CEO and founder Daniel DeMatteo.

According to the company’s announcement, Mauler left for “personal reasons, effective immediately.” Efforts by The Wall Street Journal to contact Mauler were unsuccessful.

One can only wonder what’s going on in the C-suites at GameStop. Earlier this year, CEO Paul Raines left for medical reasons and was replaced, again on a temporary basis, by DeMatteo. Raines died in March of this year.

Mauler took over in February. Now DeMatteo, currently the executive chairman of the company and who served as CEO from 2008 to 2010 is back in the hot seat. In GameStop’s announcement DeMatteo said:

Given my tenure and familiarity with the company and our associates, it’s a natural step for me to assume this role and guide the business at this time while the board searches for a permanent CEO.

Over the past 12 months, GameStop shares have lost nearly half their value while the Nasdaq Composite index has gained just over 21%. Mauler, a 16-year GameStop veteran, can hardly be blamed for that, and it’s not clear what role he played in the firing of former Chief Operating Officer Tony Bartel and Executive Vice-President Michael Hogan the day after Mauler took over.

GameStop stock traded down about 3.8% in the noon hour Friday, at $12.53 in a 52-week range of $12.20 to $24.68. The 12-month price target on the stock is $15.56.

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