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FIFA 10 record sales won't boost EA profits - Creutz

Heavy discounting "pulled forward demand," year-on-year sales won't grow significantly

The rapid sales success of FIFA 10 won't have a significant impact on Electronic Arts' bottom line in the long-term, according to Doug Creutz of analysts Cowan and Company.

Last week's heavy discounting by supermarket retailers in the UK simply pulled forward demand for the game, said Creutz, who noted that when similar promotions hit for FIFA 09, year-on-year sales of the franchise only grew marginally.

"Several UK supermarket chains ran limited-time half price promotions for FIFA 10. While we expect that this will have no impact on the revenue recognised by EA, we do think the promotions have the impact of pulling forward demand," wrote Creutz.

"Last year Tesco ran a similar promotion, and UK launch week sales of FIFA 09 were up 38 per cent versus FIFA 08. However, worldwide sales of FIFA 09 were only up 4 per cent year-on-year through the end of December, thus the early spike in UK demand did not translate into significantly higher final worldwide units.

"We believe the same could be the case this year, though we do think FIFA 10 is likely to grow year-on-year, in part due to franchise-high critical review scores in the low-90 per cent range," he added.

Creutz also added that Electronic Arts is likely to lose market share to rival Take-Two as both company's basketball games go head-to-head this week.

"Based on our read of pre-orders, we expect Take-Two's NBA 2K10 to gain more market share at the expense of EA's NBA Live 10."

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Matt Martin avatar

Matt Martin

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Matt Martin joined GamesIndustry in 2006 and was made editor of the site in 2008. With over ten years experience in journalism, he has written for multiple trade, consumer, contract and business-to-business publications in the games, retail and technology sectors.

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