April 19 (UPI) -- Video game retailer GameStop announced Monday that CEO George Sherman will step down from his post this summer as the company moves to focus more on e-commerce sales.
GameStop said Sherman will depart on July 31 -- or he might leave earlier if a successor is found sooner.
The company's board said it's been evaluating executive leadership to ensure "the right skills to meet changing business requirements."
GameStop stock was at the center of an investing controversy earlier this year, during which social media-based investors scooped up large quantities of company shares and caused short sellers -- investors who were effectively betting that the shares would lose value -- to lose billions.
Shares of GameStop stock increased by more than 10% on the New York Stock Exchange early Monday on news of Sherman's departure.
"GameStop appreciates the valuable leadership that George has provided throughout his tenure. He took many decisive steps to stabilize the business during challenging times," GameStop Chairman-designate Ryan Cohen said in a statement. "The company is much stronger today than when he joined."
Cohen praised Sherman for helping GameStop form important partnerships and said a board committee will begin a search for a new chief executive.
"I am very proud of what we have accomplished at GameStop over the past two years, including during the difficult COVID-19 pandemic," Sherman said.
Sherman noted that the company has tried to reduce its physical footprint and cut costs and debt.
Cohen is scheduled to become GameStop chairman at its next board meeting in June. His RC Ventures firm bought a minority stake in the company late last year, which partly fueled the stock-buying controversy in January.