Take-Two reports profit, reenlists GTA creators for new IP

Record $1.5 billion annual revenue yields $97 million in net income, but Q4 loss doubles; Rockstar cofounders Sam and Dan Houser staying put through 2012, working on mystery game--and new studio.

Seven and a half months after Grand Theft Auto IV began its record-breaking retail run, its publisher has reported its annual earnings. For the fiscal year ending October 31, Take-Two Interactive sales were a massive $1.538 billion, way up from the prior year's $981.8 million. Net income--aka profit--was $97 million, a large step above the $138.4 million net loss the New York-based publisher reported the year prior.

Rockstar cofounders Sam (l.) and Dan Houser.

Despite the healthy annual finances, Take-Two's fiscal fourth-quarter revenues were anemic. Though there was a year-over-year jump in sales from $292.6 million to $323.4 million during the August-October period, the company's loss more than doubled to $15.0 million. In a statement, Take-Two blamed the larger-than-expected loss on $4.5 million in "business reorganization costs" and $1.5 million in "professional fees and expenses related to unusual legal matters." That last figure is almost certainly yet another bill for the defense mounted against Electronic Arts' attempt to acquire Take-Two, which fizzled out in September after seven months of extended deadlines.

The August-October quarter also saw Take-Two incur $4.8 million in "stock-based compensation expenses." This figure likely was related to the publisher's other major announcement of the day, a deal to keep key figures in the upper echelons of GTAIV developer Rockstar Games in place until January 31, 2012. The names included cofounder and executive producer Sam Houser, fellow cofounder and vice president of creative Dan Houser (Sam's brother), and GTAIV producer Leslie Benzies. Other, unnamed Rockstar personnel were also covered under the deal.

As part of the re-up agreement, Take-Two also "agreed to fund the future development of certain new intellectual property to be owned by a newly formed company controlled by key Rockstar Games team members." Given its role as financier, Take-Two will publish the unnamed game, which may or may not be the mystery PlayStation 3-exclusive project announced in July 2007.

Rockstar recently announced the February 17 release date for Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and Damned, the first of two episodes only available for download on the Xbox 360. The first GTA game for the DS, Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars, ships on March 17--St. Patrick's Day--in North America.

While Take-Two's slate may pay off in the long term, in the short term shareholders are skeptical. The company's stock sank like a stone in after-hours trading and had fallen 18.39 percent to $9.85 as of press time. When EA made its initial $26-per-share offer in February, Take-Two's share price was just over $17.

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Discussion

104 comments
Chief_Kuuni
Chief_Kuuni

well take-two will rebound, they make great games

Dav_id83
Dav_id83

If they want more money they should release the content for GTA4 to PS3 users as well at a later date it's unknown on the content if it's a total exclusive to 360 and PC or a timed exclusive I believe it'll be timed TT know that they could get some cash from PS3 sales and PS3 sales where the companies highest.

Chico_Azteca
Chico_Azteca

i liked GTA4, online is fun i love cop and crooks but i liked Saints Row 2 more... too bad online is bad i say, add more online mode options one GTA4 that would be awesome

keatman
keatman

Rockstar is just unpredictable

Gamingcucumber
Gamingcucumber

They made a smart move not selling to EA. Take-Two is absolutely fantastic! Thanks to them we had BioShock and GTA IV in 2 years. Each of them games that will live on for a long while. Those guys keep pumping out quality products! I hope they can keep it up.

ptown58
ptown58

Whats 8 days about ? L.A. Noire sounds good hope they push the envelope with it....soccer moms be damned.

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

I'd like to see the Houser's take on a new IP and leave GTA to the people that have been involved in the past titles. Maybe a little oversight still... For not selling out and during a recession, Take-Two is holding it's own fairly well. Of course stockholders are skeptical. Not just for this company, but for nearly every investment they own. There's an obvious downfall in stock prices in nearly every market. The GTA IV DLC might be cool, but I really don't have much interest. The game already has enough to keep me busy for a while anyway. This deal sure helped Microsoft sell more copies for Xbox 360, but will the DLC receive a ROI worthy of the $50 million spent? - I'm sure Major Nelson will say so, but I'm not so sure that they big dogs who oversaw this will be happy. Does anybody even know anything about Chinatown Wars? All I've seen so far is a logo. I think the reason they aren't showing anything is because this is one GTA game that fans don't want to own because it will likely have a bunch of gimmicky controls and a lackluster story. Unlike the PSP GTA's which turned out quite well.

brendanhunt1
brendanhunt1

Well without playstation, rockstar would have nothing

maxmax1234
maxmax1234

Gta4 was pretty cool, but how did Saints row sold?

Makhdoom82
Makhdoom82

Well so far whatever Rockstar touches turns to gold :)

TripSe7en
TripSe7en

Mystery PS3 Exclusive!? I didn't know such a thing existed nowadays!

dmish82
dmish82

Hope the new project isn't as unoriginal and broken as GTAIV was.

xbox4life76
xbox4life76

i wonder who many xbox points it's going to cost for this update?

Humorguy_basic
Humorguy_basic

GTA IV for PC came out too late for 4th quarter figures. So I doubt those numbers had any effect. For sure, the main thing I get from the PC GTA IV debacle is we probably won't see another PC GTA game.

nollaig1
nollaig1

The mystery game Sony are bringing out for 09 is eight days, They had canned it but now their going to bring it out and it looks animal .

-Mist-
-Mist-

And yet Gta IV for pc sucks...

Gaara79
Gaara79

Only for download on XBL.. Does that mean there wil be a disk version for PS3 in the future? That would be a sneaky loophole haha. I can't wait for the new GTA DLC. But my biggest concern is the file size. I'm almost out of HDD room as it is. If it's over a gig I'm in trouble.

DAAVV-O
DAAVV-O

Even though I prefer my 360 to my PS3, I'm kinda glad the Houser bros are doing a PS3 exclusive. I don't feel that we've seen all the tricks that the PS3 can perform yet, and Rockstar are notorious for pushing the limit of the hardware platform they are developing for. Plus, lest we forget - this console war is ensuring that us gamers are getting some prime gaming. Sony and Microsoft are going out of their way to obtain our custom, and the more they push each other, the more they have to do to in order to keep up! This works out very good for the consumer :-)

insanitycheck3
insanitycheck3

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

jmdude
jmdude

that mystery game might just be L.A. Noire...

Cirap
Cirap

so basically they opted for the $97M profit/crap PC port of GTAIV, rather than $96M/great PC port option?

Lordx67
Lordx67

@Strigidae: You guys get Halo,Gears,Lost and Damned DLC and Braid. It's fair enough.

insanitycheck3
insanitycheck3

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Strigidae
Strigidae

Mystery PS3 exclusive... noooooooooooo. Man you PS3 fanboys get the best games: MGS4, Uncharted and now this PS3, mystery, exclusive. Noooooooooooooooooooo :).

insanitycheck3
insanitycheck3

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

GeigerdolylWodd
GeigerdolylWodd

Hey cdx00, they dont call them Rockstar games for nothing, right? :)

insanitycheck3
insanitycheck3

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

nerrsty138
nerrsty138

What's up with everyone asking for a new Max Payne? It says NEW IP, meaning a completely new franchise.

cdx00
cdx00

Why does Houser look like Billy Corgan of Smashing Pumpkins fame? Maybe they're related

gamer082009
gamer082009

Good to see hard work paying off, now if only they can push more GTA like games but in different genres, with the same mind behind it. Like a FPS maybe! Then they wouldn't have to depend on 1 or two hit games a year to push them in the green.

inferna_hermit
inferna_hermit

Great Game but i hope they don't port it for the PC like gta iv

Pete5506
Pete5506

I like the sound of the mystery game

Gamer_4_Fun
Gamer_4_Fun

Awesome game, deserved all the sails. Cant wait what they can come up with their GTA background.

mrklorox
mrklorox

So it's a whole new company and not just a development studio? If the Housers leave T2 in 2012, will they be able to take their old IP's with them? Or could that be why they took the steps to start a new company?

KhanhAgE
KhanhAgE

What's with asking R* for a new Max Payne? Remedy is the developer that created and makes that series.

lucebuce
lucebuce

take-two is known for good games , and so is rockstar , but rockstar is starting to slip when it comes to the PC version ( Bully and GTA 4 ? ) and the console versions of these games rocked man i just hope u guys can improve , cause ive been with rockstar since the first GTA was released and by the way ,auron_16 , ur display pic rocks :D

Merc_Scar
Merc_Scar

GTA4 was such an unoptimized piece of crap..

Jim_bo_bo
Jim_bo_bo

Max Payne 3. Now. I love Sam Lake. After seeing what he was capable of in Max Payne 2, he became my favorite writer.

Stiler
Stiler

Max Payne 3? For one, it says a new IP.. For two, Remedy (the developers of Max Payne) are currently working on Alan Wake.

insanitycheck3
insanitycheck3

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

NeverToBe5
NeverToBe5

Give Us MAX PAYNE MAX PAYNE MAX PAYNE !!!!