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Take-Two remains optimistic in the face of expected revenue slump

Take-Two Interactive reports lukewarm revenue and a small net loss this quarter, but bets on strong sales of catalog titles this holiday as it raises earnings expectations for the fiscal year.
Take-Two Interactive today reported lukewarm revenue and a small net loss for its most recent financial quarter. Nevertheless, the company is betting on strong sales of catalog titles in the holiday season and raising its earnings expectations for the rest of the fiscal year. Let's dig into the numbers: For the fiscal quarter ending September 30, 2014, Take-Two Interactive reported Non-GAAP net revenue of $135.4 million, a steep drop from the $1.27 billion it brought in during the same period last year. The company also reported a net loss of $35.4 million, which is significantly smaller than the $325.6 million profit it reported in the same quarter a year prior. The year-over-year loss is to be expected in light of the fact that Take-Two saw record revenue after releasing Grand Theft Auto V last September. Also, since Take-Two's financial quarter closed last month these numbers don't reflect the fact that the company launched a slate of high-profile titles in October, including Civilization: Beyond Earth, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel and NBA 2K15. The company took pains to state that it beat its own revenue expectations this quarter thanks to robust sales of its older titles, chief among them Grand Theft Auto V and Grand Theft Auto Online (via in-game microtransactions.) It's worth noting that Take-Two reported net revenue from sales of digitally-delivered content shrank to $89.8 million in the quarter, down roughly 18 percent year-over-year from the $105.5 million it reaped in the wake of the Grand Theft Auto V release. More than half of that revenue came from "recurrent consumer spending" (i.e. anything beyond the initial game purchase) on Take-Two catalog titles like Grand Theft Auto Online and NBA 2K15. Looking ahead, the company is feeling confident and has raised its guidance accordingly; it now expects to generate between $1.4 and $1.5 billion in Non-GAAP revenue during the 2015 fiscal year. Rockstar Games is expected to contribute to that projected bottom line with the upcoming relaunch of Grand Theft Auto V on the PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 consoles. Take-Two is also betting on significant revenue from 2K's own re-release of BioShock Infinite: The Complete Edition for last-gen consoles and its upcoming wrestling title WWE 2K15, as well as the launch of its mulitplayer shooter Evolve in the 2015 calendar year.

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