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Coronavirus Shutdowns Hurting Springville Game Business

SPRINGVILLE, Utah – The COVID-19 outbreak is impacting at least one Utah game business, which depends on factories in China to make their products.

Seth Hiatt is the owner and CEO of Springville-based MayDay Games, which makes card and board games.

He said four of the five factories they use to manufacture their games are still shut down due to the outbreak, which has infected over 80,000 and killed over 2,600 people in China.

“I’d say that our sales right now, we had some stock because of Chinese New Year, but we sold through most of it,” Hiatt said. “The last week or two, we started to run out of stuff. I think our March sales will be off about 20-to-30% of what we normally do, because of out of stock issues.”

Some of their best-sellers are out of stock, while others are nearly gone, with no new shipment in sight.

“We’ll just have to wait and see,” Hiatt said. “I don’t even know what the factories are going to do, because they’re all paying their employees still, so if it goes more than another couple of months, there’s going to be some people shutting their factories down and just going out of business.”

Their Springville warehouse, which Hiatt said would normally be full right now, is quickly running out of supplies as their stock gets shipped out for online orders.

MayDay Games’ Springville warehouse.

“We’re just shipping the last of one of our top-sellers today, and we’ve taken it off the website and Amazon,” Hiatt said. “It’s now not selling, and we probably sell, I don’t know, 500-800 units of that a week, and it’s gone. Of our top 20 items, we probably are out of eight or nine of those already. And the other ones will be gone by next month at the latest.”

Hiatt said he’s already looking into other options — even possibly manufacturing in other countries. He’s hoping it won’t come to that, but with 4,000 preorders already placed for one of his new games, he said both he and customers are frustrated.

“It’s frustrating for us,” Hiatt said. “It’s frustrating for our customers. It’s frustrating for everybody. Nobody knows what’s going to happen.”

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