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Capcom profits plummet 73%

Net sales down 27.3% as publisher admits to "sluggish" year

Capcom has seen net profits drop a precipitous 73.1 per cent over the last twelve months, as the company also saw net sales drop by 27.3 per cent.

Net profit fell to ¥2.17 billion (£16.1m/$23.6m) and sales dropped to ¥66.8 billion (£496.2m/ $727.5m).

Capcom attributed the poor results to weak sales of "some new titles". No games were mentioned by name but MotoGP, Bionic Commando, Spyborgs and Dark Void, all of which were Western-developed titles, proved disappointments at retail.

Although Capcom was one of the first Japanese publishers to embrace the use of Western developers, in a bid to improve its international appeal, the company signalled a U-turn of sorts in February of this year.

At the time the company indicated that: "We plan to develop new titles primarily in Japan. Overseas companies may be used mostly to develop titles for existing game series with well-established characters and universal themes."

For most of the financial year Capcom was able to emphasise the continued success of the Monster Hunter brand in Japan and the international success of Resident Evil 5 and Street Fighter IV.

The recent Western releases of prominent new titles such as Lost Planet 2, Super Street Fighter IV and Monster Hunter Tri fell just outside of the financial year ended March 31, 2010.

As a result Capcom suggested that a "sharp rebound" would occur in the next quarter and financial year, with net sales predicted to increase to ¥95 billion (£701m/$1.0bn) and operating income to ¥15 billion (£111m/$163m).

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David Jenkins