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Australia breaks records with 2009 revenue of $2bn

Sales up by 4%; family genre games rise 11%

Australia's games industry broke sales records in 2009 despite the difficult economic climate, with revenues of AUD 2.05 billion (GBP 1.14 billion).

The figure is an increase of 4 per cent on last year - a modest rise but still healthy when compared to other markets that have seen a decrease, said Interactive Games and Entertainment Association CEO Ron Curry.

Taking data from sales of hardware, gaming peripherals and boxed software, market research group GfK Retail and Technology Australia found that software sales had increased by 6 per cent on last year, while hardware sales remained consistent with 2.247 million units sold in 2009, compared to 2.249 million in 2008. Sales of peripherals were up by 31 per cent.

Family games proved a key genre for the second year in a row, with it accounting for 27 per cent of all games sold - up 11 per cent from 2008. The second most popular genre was action, which made up 15 per cent of sales.

"Australia's interactive entertainment industry continues to maintain sales despite the global economic slowdown," said Curry. "Videogames remain a popular household pastime that can be played by the entire family. Whilst a modest increase, we need to view this against a very tough economic environment and avoid comparing it to last year where consumers used their Government stimulus package to invest in a form of entertainment that brings the whole family together and can be enjoyed time and time again

"Despite a challenging economic climate, interactive entertainment has proven to offer families good value entertainment. We expect that in 2010 the industry will continue to maintain its steady sales performance as playing video games becomes as popular as watching television or surfing the net."

The data didn't take into account additional revenue from online retail sales, downloadable content, online game subscriptions and games for mobile phones.

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