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World Of WarCraft Aids Vivendi Q4 Results

French media and telecoms group Vivendi, parent of Vivendi Games, has revealed an 1.2% overall rise in revenues, but a 33.1% boost for the game division's sales, thanks to Blizzard and World Of Warcraft's continuing major success.
Officials from French media and telecoms group Vivendi, parent of Vivendi Games, have released details of the company’s fourth quarter sales, showing only a 1.2% overall rise in revenues, but a 33.1% boost for the game division thanks to World Of Warcraft's continuing success. Although the company experienced a 2.1 percent drop in revenues from its SFR division, France’s second largest mobile operator, World of Warcraft, along with pay-television company Maroc Telecom, was named as the primary factor in keeping the results largely in line with expectations. In terms of the company’s Vivendi Games video game business, which includes Blizzard Entertainment and a revitalized Sierra division, revenues were up by 33.1 percent to €326 million ($422m) in the quarter, ahead of estimates of a 13 percent gain. The results do not cover the recent release of World of WarCraft: The Burning Crusade, which has already sold 2.4 million copies worldwide. For the full year Vivendi Games saw revenues of €804 million ($1.04bn), up 25.4 percent on the previous year. The increase was attributed primarily to the continued success of World of WarCraft, which now has a global subscriber base of 8 million players. Titles including Scarface: The World is Yours, Ice Age 2, The Legend of Spyro: A New Beginning, Eragon and the Xbox 360 version of F.E.A.R. were described as “solid performers”. Total turnover for the company was put at €5.545 billion ($7.18bn) for the three months to December 31st. In keeping with standard French business practices, profits for the quarter are due to be announced at a later date. Full year sales were put at €20.044 billion ($25.97bn), up from €19.484 billion ($25.24bn) the previous year but slightly below analyst expectations of €20.1 billion ($26.04bn). No update was given on full year profit targets or forecasts for 2007.

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