Take-Two Q3 Sales Down, Layoffs Loom, BioShock Brightens

Publisher Take-Two has announced Q3 sales down slightly to $206.4 million on sales of The Darkness, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, The BIGS and All-Pro Football 2K8, as more than 1.5 million BioShock units are shipped, and
Publisher Take-Two has announced its third quarter earnings, showing sales down slightly to $206.4 million on sales of The Darkness, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, The BIGS and All-Pro Football 2K8 and overall losses down to $58.5 million, as talk of further layoffs looms. The sales were down from $241.2 million the year prior, which, says the publisher, is primarily because of 2006's strong sales of Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories for the PS2. To date, the publisher has seen nine month sales of $689.2 million, down from $771.3 million the year prior, and losses of $131.3 million, down from $170.9 million in 2006. Take-Two notes a number of recent highlights, including the just-announced 2K Play casual/family friendly gaming label, the release of Bioshock and its subsequent rise to the top of the Xbox 360 Metacritic charts, positive reaction to Wii exclusive Carnival Games, and the sale of its game accessories business Joytech. The company also revealed, in statements released alongside its financial filings, that BioShock has already shipped over 1.5 million units worldwide since its launch in late August, boding well for its Q4 results, which span August, September, and October 2007. Take-Two also says that it expects "additional restructuring costs will be recorded in the fourth quarter of 2007 and into the 2008 fiscal year," with "further headcount reduction, asset write-offs and associated professional fees," though no further information has yet been detailed. Said CEO Ben Feder, "Take-Two is well-positioned to capitalize on the growth of the video game market as next generation consoles gain traction. Our creative teams are delivering a strong and increasingly diverse product portfolio, including our successful new BioShock franchise. We are looking forward to our 2007 holiday line up, as well as our solid 2008 slate, which includes the release of Grand Theft Auto IV in our fiscal 2008 second quarter."

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