Ubisoft reports full-year 2007-08 sales
Full-year sales up 36% to €928 million / Target for 2008-09 current operating income revised upwards
Sales for the fourth quarter of 2007-08 came to €217 million, up 10.0%, or 20.3% at constant exchange rates, compared with the €197 million recorded for the same period of 2006-07. Full-year sales for fiscal 2007-08 totaled €928 million, versus €680 million for fiscal 2006-07, representing an increase of 36.4%, or 42.9% at constant exchange rates.
Fourth-quarter sales outstripped the initial guidance of approximately €165 million issued on January 23, 2008. This strong showing was driven by better-than-expected performances from the following games:
-Tom Clancy s Rainbow Six® Vegas 2, which reached almost 2 million sell-in units and ranked second in all-format sales for March in the United States and United Kingdom according to NPD and Chart-Track.
-The Games For Everyone (G4E) brands, which topped €230 million in sales for the year.
-Assassin's Creed(TM) , which continued its robust performance, achieving over 6 million sell-in units since its launch.
During the first three months of the 2008 calendar year, Ubisoft continued to grow faster than the market based on sell-through data:
-In the United States, Ubisoft posted growth of 38% (compared with 28% for the US market as a whole), with market share of 7.2% versus 6.7% in the first quarter of 2007.
-In Europe, Ubisoft s growth was 43% (compared with 26% for the European market as a whole), with market share of 9.5% versus 8.4% in the first quarter of 2007.
Yves Guillemot, Chief Executive Officer of Ubisoft, stated: "2007-08 was a remarkable year for Ubisoft, underpinned by three strategic achievements:
-Continued strengthening of existing franchises such as Rainbow Six, Rayman, The Settlers and Ghost Recon which recorded excellent sales levels.
-The sharp ramp-up of the "Games For Everyone" casual range, whose sales figures tripled over the year.
-A steady output of new releases with Assassin's Creed and Imagine that have performed exceptionally well.
These strategic focuses will once again be the key to our success in 2008 which is set to be another record year for the industry with growth expected to reach at least 15%. Ubisoft s games line-up is particularly strong, with no fewer than seven existing franchises, five new releases and new brands in the casual segment."
Targets for full-year 2007-08 current operating income maintained Ubisoft is maintaining its target that was revised upwards on March 31, 2008 for current operating income before stock options to represent around 14% of sales.
First-quarter 2008-09 sales This period will see the following releases:
- Haze (TM) for the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system;
- Assassin's Creed(TM) and Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six® Vegas 2 for PC;
- New casual games for the Nintendo DS(TM) and Nintendo Wii(TM) .
The Group expects sales for the first quarter of 2008-09 to come in at around €154 million, representing a 15% increase on the comparable prior-year period.
Guidance raised for 2008-09 current operating income Ubisoft is maintaining the approximately €1 billion sales target for 2008-09 that it announced on January 23, 2008. At the same time, it is raising its guidance for current operating income before stock options to at least 12% of sales, versus the previous estimate of at least 11%. This revision takes into account savings on royalties resulting from the acquisition of the Tom Clancy name for video games and ancillary products as well as the Group s stronger back-catalog following better-than-expected performances in the fourth quarter of 2007-08.
Market share: During the first three months of 2008 Ubisoft was ranked the number 3 independent publisher in the United States with 7.2% market share (compared with number 3 and 6.7% one year earlier); number 2 in Europe with 9.5% market share (compared with number 2 and 8.4%); number 2 in France with 9.1% market share (compared with number 2 and 8.5%); number 3 in the United Kingdom with 10.5% market share (compared with number 2 and 10.3%); number 2 in Germany with 8.0% market share (compared with number 3 and 7.2%).
Ubisoft acquires the Tom Clancy name for video games and ancillary products. This acquisition transfers to Ubisoft all of the intellectual property rights to the Tom Clancy name on a perpetual basis and free of all related future royalty payments, for use in video games and ancillary products including related books, movies and merchandising.
Ubisoft acquires its first development studio in India, based in Pune. Set up in late 2006 by Gameloft, this studio has a team of 120 developers and testers who will initially focus on porting titles to handheld consoles and will reinforce Ubisoft s testing teams. The goal is to become 200-people strong in 12 months' time and to reach a team of 500 in the coming years.
Ubisoft opens a new development studio in Singapore. The decision to set up this new studio forms part of Ubisoft's strategy to strengthen the Group's presence in Asia and follows just behind the opening of a testing and development studio in Chengdu (China) in September 2007. The objective is for the teams to reach some 300 people over the next few years.
Ubisoft is a leading producer, publisher and distributor of interactive entertainment products worldwide and has grown considerably through a strong and diversified line-up of products and partnerships. Ubisoft has offices in 25 countries and sales in more than 55 countries around the globe. It is committed to delivering high-quality, cutting-edge video game titles to consumers. Ubisoft generated sales of €928 million for the 2007-08 fiscal year. To learn more, please visit www.ubisoftgroup.com.