Borderlands 2 ships 5m, boosts Take-Two sales

Quarterly revenues more than doubled, but full-year sales forecast slashed as Grand Theft Auto V set for next fiscal year

Take-Two Interactive today released its earnings report for the three months ended September 30, posting booming revenues for the quarter, but warning that it would fall drastically short of its full year projections.

For the recently concluded second fiscal quarter, Take-Two posted net revenues of $273.1 million, easily surpassing the $107 million it managed for the same period last year, when its biggest release was Civilization V: Game of the Year Edition. This time around, the publisher benefited from the debut of Borderlands 2, which it deemed a "breakout success" with more than 5 million copies shipped to date.

The company also listed catalog sales of Grand Theft Auto IV and Red Dead Redemption among its biggest revenue drivers for the quarter, and noted that its digital sales had grown 108 percent year-over-year, accounting for about $57.6 million in sales. Despite the increased sales, Take-Two still posted a net loss for the quarter of $12.5 million, compared to a $41.5 million net loss for the same period the year before.

While the company's second quarter numbers were significantly improved, Take-Two downgraded its full-year expectations. Previously, the publisher had forecast full-year sales of $1.7 billion to $1.8 billion. Today, it dialed that back to $1.1 billion to $1.2 billion. Take-Two attributed the lowered expectations "to reflect its revised assumed release schedule."

The readily apparent change to that schedule was the movement of Grand Theft Auto V into the company's fiscal 2014, which begins next April. While it was never officially announced for the current fiscal year, Grand Theft Auto V was widely believed to be a large part of the company's original guidance. Yesterday the publisher officially slated the game for release in spring 2013. In Take-Two's earnings report today, CEO Strauss Zelnick today said with the game's window set, "we are poised to generate substantial revenue and earnings growth in fiscal year 2014."

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