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Gameplay plc has sold its retail sales games operation in the UK and the Nordics for less than the cost of half a pint of beer.

The Nordic Boxed Games business was sold for Swedish Krona 1 (7 pence). The UK Boxed Games business was sold for £1.

The move, announced today, is one of a raft of measures that signals Gameplay plc's exit from the retail games market.

In Germany, Gameplay Gmbh is going to the insolvency court for protection and to appoint an administrator.

And in Spain, negotiations are still underway to find a buyer for the Boxed Games business.

Gameplay plc has said that talks with an interested party about the possible sale of Gameplay plc have ended.

This leaves Gameplay plc with just its Technology Division, which includes its online gaming service, Wireplay, its interests in interactive TV (iTV) and its digital distribution business.

The company said that it intended to publish the full results of its strategic review and its interim results for the six months to January 2001 by the end of May.

In a statement the company said: "At that time, the board will outline measures it proposes to take in order to bring the remaining business through to profitability, since lower than expected proceeds from the sale of these assets mean that the company may not now have sufficient cash to reach profitability.

"In the meantime Gameplay continues to trade although cash remains tight and is being closely managed,"
it said.

Yesterday The Register reported that almost 50 staff at Gameplay plc's head offices in London were effectively told they'd lost their jobs.

It remains to be seen what will happen with the rest of Gameplay plc. With money tight, and hopes of a takeover dwindling, it seems as though the options for its future remain limited.

Shares in Gameplay plc fell more than 50 per cent by lunchtime touching 7.5 pence. ®

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