Some interesting news this week as the video game rental service GameFly has officially been acquired by Alliance Entertainment. The news comes from GamesIndustry.biz who reported that the company has been acquired but that it will somehow remain independent. We say "somehow" because suspiciously, Alliance co-owner and CEO Jeff Walker is also now listed as CEO and co-owner of GameFly, while the company's previous CEO and president, David Hodess, is nowhere to be seen. He's not even mentioned as having been relocated to a new position, as Alliance SVP of Retail Sales Tim Hinsley is now the president, and longtime GameFly employee Chris Anderson is still apparently the VP of Product. Here's a snippet from the article.
Alliance co-owner and CEO Jeff Walker will hold those same roles at GameFly going forward, even though Alliance has said the rental service will continue operating independently. […] GameFly will make some unspecified changes to its subscriptions in the coming months, but Alliance has already said it plans to expand both the catalog of games GameFly users can rent, as well as adding new games, accessories, hardware, collectibles, and movies for sale through GameFly.
"We're intensely focused on listening to what our customers are telling us, and then finding ways to give them what they are asking for," Walker said. "Alliance is the largest distributor of physical media in the US, and we're using our expertise with GameFly's nearly 20 years of experience in subscription game rentals to imagine new offerings that previously were not doable."
The move comes suspiciously close to the release of the PS5 and Xbox Series X, as those who have been keeping track of GameFly's progress over the past year have noted that very little was mentioned about their plans moving forward with both consoles. While we don't have all the details, it doesn't take a genius to figure out the acquisition was made to push the company in that direction at a pivotal time with an entity prepared to help make the transition. The complete details of what will be coming to GameFly are uncertain, but it's pretty clear that at some point the company made a choice to stay afloat in this next era of gaming and took an offer to make it happen.