Full disclosure, I do not play any Games Workshop miniatures games. I have some of their miniatures which I use for other purposes like Pathfinder and such. I do not paint and play armies for Warhammer or Warhammer 40K. I just wanted to say that I don't have a dog in this fight.
Last June(2013) the miniatures giant Games Workshop made some changes to their trade policy which affected the vendors that sell their products. These changes actually prompted some stores to close or stop selling GW products rather than deal with these changes. GW touted these changes as securing the future of the hobby. The specifics of these changes are all available online for review. They were drastic to say the least.
Fast forward to January 2014, based on earnings reports that earnings were trending down by four million pounds from the previous year the price of GW stock has plummeted over 37%. It seems that eliminating distribution channels does not increase you sales after all.The price has been hovering at around 520 p for two weeks now after months at over 800 (830 high). Looking at the 52 week chart of the stock price is pretty amazing. The price is way up there one day then boom, 199 point plus drop. The price has not been this low since February 2012.
I would not go pronouncing them dead, yet. They are essentially a global monopoly in the table-top miniature games niche. There is some competition now and they are way more interested in selling by any means possible than funneling all of the sales to their own site, The next few weeks will be interesting. Does GW respond by opening up trade and allowing online sales of their products? Does the stock price drop some more on silence from GW? I am not a financial analyst but I do believe in taking care of your customers. Is this just karma tapping GW on the shoulder?