EA’s not headed for the poorhouse anytime soon

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Eamoney

EA released its quarterly and annual earning report yesterday, and contrary to what you might believe – thanks to huge blows like the resignations of CEO John Ricitiello and the fustercluck that was the SimCity launch – the company’s still making a fair bit of cash.

According to the report, EA’s net revenue was indeed down in both the fourth quarter (from $1.37 billion to $1.21 billion) and the full financial year ($4.14 billion to $3.80 billion) – but it’s net profit for the 2013 fiscal period has actually increased – up from $76 million for 2012 to $98 million for 2013. That’s nearly a 30% increase in pure profit.

It seems most of the increased profits can be attributed to the onslaught of digital offerings and, of course, its annual sports offerings like FIFA that essentially print money.

Battlefield Premium, the almost necessary $50 bolt-on Season pass for Battlefield 3 now has over 3.5 million subscribers, earning EA  $120 million in revenue for the year. Free-to-play mobile offerings like Real Racing 3 and The Simpsons: Tapped Out were also huge earners, with the latter earning EA $10 million in the last quarter alone.

And FIFA 13, as you’d expect, sold rather well. More than 14.5 million copies of the game have been sold since the game’s launch last year; about a 30% increase over FIFA 12. Add to that the success of the FIFA’s Ultimate Team mode, which brought in digital revenue of over $200 million, and it’s easy to see why EA releases a new one every year. Ea’s just renegotiated its contract with FIFA, and will be producing licenced football games until 2022. 

Even the much maligned SimCity’s been a success, selling over 1.6 million copies since it launched. For a niche game on a single platform that had a disastrous launch, that’s really not too bad.

EA’s said nothing of Dead Space 3 in its earning’s report, which isn’t too surprising; by all accounts it’s considered a failure; requiring 3 million in sales to be profitable enough for a sequel. It’s sold around 1.2 million units across all three platforms so far.

It’s worth noting that all of the figures in these reports are on a Non-GAAP basis, meaning they don’t adhere to Generally Accepted Accounting Principles – so they could just be random numbers pulled from a hat.

“As we enter a new fiscal year, EA is well-positioned for dynamic growth on next generation consoles, PCs, and mobile platforms,” said executive chairman Larry Probst.

“With world-class games, a rapidly growing digital business, and top-notch creative talent, we are excited about EA’s strategy for FY 2014 and beyond.”

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Geoffrey Tim

I'm old, grumpy and more than just a little cynical. One day, I found myself in possession of a NES, and a copy of Super Mario Bros 3. It was that game that made me realise that games were more than just toys to idly while away time - they were capable of being masterpieces. I'm here now, looking for more of those masterpieces.

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