How the video games industry is faring
Friday, May 11, 2012
A look at results from selected companies in the video games business:
April 12: Market tracker NPD Group says U.S. retail sales of video game hardware, software and accessories fell 25 percent in March from a year earlier to $1.1 billion. It marked the fourth month of decline as Sony Corp.'s new PS Vita handheld failed to spark a turnaround. Electronic Arts Inc.'s "Mass Effect 3" was the top seller in the month.
April 18: Video game maker THQ Inc. says its expects adjusted loss and revenue in the latest quarter will come in above Wall Street's expectations because of better-than-expected digital sales and strong sales of "Saints Row: The Third" and "UFC Undisputed 3."
April 19: Microsoft Corp. says revenue from Xbox 360 products and services fell 33 percent. Although it got more revenue from its Xbox Live subscription service, it sold about half the Xbox 360 consoles it did a year ago and fewer stand-alone Kinect motion-control sensors.
April 26: Nintendo Co. reports a $533 million loss for the fiscal year that just ended as weak sales of the Wii home console and the strong yen eroded earnings. Nintendo sold 9.8 million Wii machines during the fiscal year, fewer than the 15 million a year earlier and below its initial hopes of selling 13 million machines.
Monday: Electronic Arts Inc. forecast lower-than-expected revenue for the coming year, sending shares down. The company, maker of games such as "Madden NFL" and "The Sims," is trying to boost digital revenue as demand weakens for console video games. CEO John Riccitiello said EA in the coming year would "break away from the pack, with a very different profile than the traditional game companies and capabilities that none of our new digital competitors can match."
Tuesday: The Walt Disney Co. says revenue at its interactive media division rose 13 percent while the unit trimmed losses. The interactive unit is still on pace to be profitable by 2013 as the company prioritizes social and mobile games over expensive-to-produce games for video game consoles like the Xbox 360.
Wednesday: Activision Blizzard Inc. says net income declined because of lower revenue from its games, but its adjusted results beat Wall Street's expectations and the company's own forecasts. Activision publishes "Call of Duty" and "World of Warcraft."
Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. says it has delayed the release of "BioShock Infinite," an eagerly awaited shooter game set in 1912, to give creators more time. It will launch on Feb. 26, rather than in October as the company said previously. Take-Two's stock fell 6 percent.
Thursday: Sony Corp. reports a decrease in its game business during the fiscal year that ended in March. That's because of lower revenue from PlayStation 3 because of a price cut and lower sales of the older, PlayStation 2 because of a platform migration.
May 15: THQ Inc.
May 17: GameStop Corp.
May 22: Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. (quarterly earnings)
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