Take-Two posts full-year profit, Rockstar contracts renewed

Publisher rides 8.5 million-unit selling Red Dead Redemption to $48 million profit on revenue up 49% to $1.14 billion; Spec Ops pushed to mid-2012.

Take-Two has already reported its 12-month earnings once in the past few months. However, given that it adjusted its fiscal year-end to the more traditional March window, it has now done so for a second time. As expected, the results remain incredibly positive, thanks in large part to the strong performance of Rockstar Games' Red Dead Redemption.

Spec Ops will now toe the line in mid-2012.

Reporting on its fiscal year-end earnings today, Take-Two said net revenue came in at $1.14 billion, a figure 49 percent higher than the $763 million it brought in over the same period last year. As for that promised profit, the publisher posted net income of $48.46 million during the 12-month period, up from a $123 million loss last year.

Take-Two subsidiary Rockstar Games provided the publisher's primary revenue and profit growth during the year with Red Dead Redemption, which shipped in May 2010. The game has now sold in more than 8.5 million units.

The publisher did not provide a sales update on Rockstar's latest top-rated title, L.A. Noire, but it did say that Grand Theft Auto IV: Complete and Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare also led sales for the publisher.

Given Rockstar's strong record, Take-Two also touted the fact that it has extended its employment contract with the publishing label's creative team: Sam Houser, Dan Houser, and Leslie Benzies. Take-Two said it renewed these employees' contracts on a long-term basis with largely similar economic terms.

Beyond Rockstar's lineup, Take-Two also saw performance from its NBA basketball franchise. Benefiting from EA Sports' decision to cancel NBA Elite 11, NBA 2K11 has now sold in more than 5 million units. Other top performers included Top Spin 4, Major League Baseball 2K11, Civilization V, and Borderlands.

With speculation rife that Take-Two is ripe for acquisition, the publisher said today that it has entered into a new management agreement with ZelnickMedia, with Strauss Zelnick continuing to serve as chairman and CEO of both companies. The new management agreement, which remains subject to shareholder approval, also sees Karl Slatoff continuing as Take-Two's chief operating officer.

As part of its earnings report, Take-Two also updated its release schedule for the coming year. The publisher now expects to ship Yager's tactical shooter Spec Ops: The Line during the first half of its 2013 fiscal year, which equates to an April 1, 2012 to September 30, 2012 window.

Take-Two said it expects revenues to come in at $1 billion to $1.1 billion for its in-progress fiscal year ending March 31, 2012.

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