Ubisoft reported that its sales in the first half of its fiscal year came in at €166 million ($246.3 million), down 51.7 percent from the €344 million ($518.4 million) it reported for the same period last year. Alongside the decline came a reported €80 million ($118.7 million) in losses, whereas for the first six months of 2008 the company saw €33 million ($49 million)in profits.
The France-headquartered publisher's fiscal first half ended September 30. For its second quarter, it reported sales of €83 million ($123.1 million) -- a 52.8 percent year-over-year decrease, but in line with the company's guidance. In fact, Ubi had forecast second-quarter sales of €80 million ($118.7 million), so it slightly outdid itself.
The company credits its second-quarter performance primarily to Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood
, which it said has sold-in close to 900,000 units in the fiscal first half.
Although Ubi listed Nintendo DS and Wii titles like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Smash Up, The Price is Right 2
and Battle of Giants: Dragons
as good performers, it didn't provide further details, and also said its Academy of Champions
and film tie-in Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs
performed well "in certain countries," though it declined to say which.
The company says it's still on track to meet its full-year target of €1.04 billion ($1.54 billion) in sales and "at least 7 percent" profits from those sales. As it's saved all its biggest titles -- notably Assassin's Creed 2
-- for the back half of the fiscal year, Ubisoft expects "the most important quarter in [its] history," with a 22 percent boost in sales in the months to come. Expect a 6 percent boost in sales to €540 million in the upcoming fiscal third quarter alone, says Ubisoft.
"As expected, in the first half of fiscal 2009-10 the market was very difficult both for Nintendo DS games and for our back-catalog titles, with few new releases," says CEO Yves Guillemot. "The second half of the year should be significantly more favorable with a return to strong growth and profitability."
Guillemot called the current environment for the industry "uncertain," adding that "the full effect of the sharp drop in console prices has yet to be seen," stressing the diversity of its lineup as a reliable strategy.
"Finally, thanks to the investments we have made in recent years to develop our creative workforce, we will be launching numerous initiatives and innovations in the short and medium-term in all segments of the industry, both for current and future consoles and for online games," the CEO concluded.