French publisher beats thrice-upwardly revised projections; annual profit jumps by $108 million on Rainbow Six Vegas 2, Assassin's Creed sales; one unnamed all-new IP and two new franchise installments in the pipe.
At the end of March, Ubisoft revised its annual earnings projections for the third time to €920 million ($1.44 billion), following better-than-expected sales of Assassin's Creed and Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Vegas 2. Today, the Paris-based publisher released its final full-year earnings, which revealed that its massive estimate was conservative.
For the 12 months ended March 31, Ubisoft saw €928.3 million ($1.46 billion) in earnings, a hefty 36 percent increase over the €680.3 million ($1.06 billion) it took in the year prior. Even more impressive was that the company almost tripled its profits, from €40.5 million ($63.59 million) to €109.8 million ($172.34 million).
The profits came despite Ubisoft dropping €48 million ($75.37 million) on acquisitions of "tangible and intangible assets," including the outright purchase of a new studio in Pune, India. (The company also started up three other internal shops in Singapore, Kiev, and the recently earthquake-ravaged Chinese city of Chengdu.) A further €18 million ($28.26 million) was expended to obtain the Sunflowers, Anno, and Digital Kids licenses.
According to the company's report, the €48 million ($75.37 million) acquisition expenditure includes the first of four payments to author Tom Clancy, whose brand name Ubisoft bought in March. Though the publisher did not specify how much of the amount went to Clancy, the steep price appears to be worth it. News of the deal sent Ubisoft's shares soaring, and the company estimates that owning the Clancy name will save it €5 million ($7.85 million) in royalty payments even after paying the author. For the year ended March 31, Ubisoft spent €25.3 million ($39.75 million) in royalties on its licensed-game portfolio, which, though dominated by Clancy, also included the movie tie-in TMNT and Xbox 360 Naruto games.
With a few exceptions, the Clancy deal gives Ubisoft ownership of all Clancy-branded book, film, comic, merchandising, and "ancillary products." Naturally, it also includes full ownership of all games bearing the Hunt for Red October author's name--and Ubisoft praised the "strength" of Clancy franchises Ghost Recon and Rainbow Six as keys to its record year. Other franchises that Ubisoft singled out were Rayman, Settlers, and (again) Assassin's Creed, which has sold over 6 million units on all platforms. Casual games were also big, with the Petz games topping 8 million units, and the Imagine line surpassing 4 million units sold.
Today's report also revealed that Ubisoft has several all-new games up its sleeve. "Going forward, 2008-09 is set to be another record year for Ubisoft," CEO Yves Guillemot said in a statement. "We now have 14 multimillion-unit-selling franchises and will be launching 5 new IPs during the period as well as new brands in the casual games segment." (Emphasis added.)
A slide presentation that accompanyied the report named four of the all-new IPs--H.A.W.X., EndWar, Shaun White Snowboarding, and the recently launched Haze--with the fifth being identified only as an "unannounced title." The same slide also revealed that two as-yet-untitled installments in existing franchises will also be released during the year, alongside Far Cry 2, Brothers in Arms: Hell's Highway, Splinter Cell: Conviction, the just-announced new Prince of Persia, and a new Anno game.
For the coming 2008-2009 fiscal year, Ubisoft is forecasting revenues of €1 billion ($1.57 billion), with €154 million ($241.78 million) in sales during the current quarter. Today's report was released after trading ended on the EuroNext market, on which Ubisoft shares closed at €68.47 ($107.51). According to the Associated Press, that gives the publisher a market capitalization of around €3.2 billion ($5 billion)--around 20 percent of which is still owned by Electronic Arts.
They never expected to sell so many copies Assassins Creed. They weren't expecting to make a trilogy. But now that people are demanding, they are planning to make a second and last one. -- Worker for Assassin's Creed
i dont like this wheres assassins creed to or G.R.A.W3 seriously man ghost recon 2 came along time ago means its up for new one what the hell.
Note to Tor and Gamespot. Revenue does not equal earnings. The title is wrong. The first line is wrong. And the first line of the 2nd paragraph is wrong. Sales = Revenue. You are confusing Revenue and Earnings (Profit). Get it right. This is endemic in GS. Follow the link and the same errors occured when you reported last quarter's results.
Wow! they're selling like pancakes, i haven't bought this game and I'm already missing out all the action, I'm always on the go so i wouldn't mind if they make it on the psp lol, still i don't know where i should buy this, in the 360 or the PC?
No news of Assassin's Creed 2!!! I thought it was meant to be a trilogy??? I need to hear some news on that .. quick!
Do they have a Rainbow Six game based on the original book? If not that would be a good one to make because the plot is really good in that book.
You can find a live feed at uplay.com but you'll need to create a ubi.com account if you dont have one. The show is live now. The host of the show annoying though.
What the hell happend to Ubi Days? Gamespot had a huge countdown timer and now it's nowhere to be found?
@ bestkilla First off, how hard is it to spell my name correctly? lol, and secondly, when people usually have the " :P " in their post, it means they're just joking around. And lastly, don't hate on Assassin's Creed just because you can't appreciate it. AC was awesome, and everyone knows it. People just like to jump on the bandwagon, and not think for themselves.
In my honest opinion the last good Tom Clancy game was RS:V1, since then I've been a hater of Tom Clancy console games and Ubisoft in general... Why? Assassins creed was pure dump...good at first but it repeats itself so many times it is actually like playing a broken record. Vegas 2 was just a rehash of vegas 1 with more bugs in... The only games I'm actually looking forward to are HAWX and Splinter Cell Conviction...And I got to respect UBI for taking SC:Conviction back to the drawing board...That means they are actually putting effort into it... Endwar?...Meh...we have seen a mirage of crappy RTS's recently can't say I care for them since EA released Generals.... Anyways yeah
TO kamuie fui all the games listed there really good ok, and besides assassins creed wasint even that good it was so repative. andbrothers in arms will kick ass
ubisoft has let me down since the move to next gen , games like AC,Vegas2,and haze. i do hope they will make the future games alot better now that they have more experience with the hardware for both consoles
only one on that list im really looking forward to, splinter cell con. hope the delay was worth it, far cry 2 could be good but i didnt reckon much to the previous far cry games on the box`s, PC version still remains supreme. Final word, shut up guy below, AC was amazing, learn to type, use grammar checker and get a girlfriend ffs
Well their two highest hyped games, haze and AC kinda blew it. But btoh had potential.So a sequel to AC may be a need now. To just show it can indeed be a series beyond what the first was. Potential was their, and alot of it. The game wasn't. Sequel might be just what it needs. Best game they ever made was still way back. PoP SoT.
HAWK looks like ace combat 6, but I bet the story is going to be much more pro-war than the ace combat series have been. The game looks nice with the more realistic missiles, but I hope the controls are more realistic unlike the ones from blazing angels.
Cmon Ubi, drop all that other garbage and just focus on Assassin's Creed 2! :P Although, I'll admit, H.A.W.X looks pretty cool. We'll see I guess.
TheOleDominion1: That's not because of the 'deep' combat system (Which wasn't that deep btw) It was because the animators actually bothered to put some effort into their work.
AC had THE deepest combat system of any game out today for 3rd person action adventure games. Not at one point did the assassin model's body or movement look distorted or akward during fighting UNLIKE the new "Borne Supremacy" game. I hope others incorporate this way of fighting in future titles. Especially the 3rd person rpg genre.
@ JPH Haze: Eurogamer 4/10 Game Informer 6.25 GameSpot 6/10 GameSpy 2/5 IGN 4.5/10 X-Play 2/5 Oh em gee !!!
i agree with Mikethechimp, when was the last time a Rayman game came out, (i want a proper rayman game, not one about rabbits and minigames). Snowboarding game = me :), thats if its good. I'm still waiting for a snowboarding to rival SSX Tricky, which i got the yaer the PS2 came out. All that time ago and i still haven't found a snowboarding game to macth it :( ^_^
revelations It will be nice to get another snowboarding game. Amped 3 was the last one right? Been a long time.>>>> Yes, bring back the SSX franchise please EA and not some watered down version like SSX Blur for the wii.
Assassin's Creed. +'s Stealth Kills Story and execution( Movies a thing of the past ha ha) Open World: Big, Beautiful, Climb almost anywhere! Missions and Side Missions Character response to gameplay Awesome lead character(Altair=Badass!) Combat -'s Glitches and Freezes ( It's patched up now) Same side missions over and over THIS IS A GREAT GAME!!!!
Spektre: it got horrid reviews on IGN as well, so its not just Gamespot. I played the demo, it was nothing special
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