Starbreeze's six-month earnings rise

Sweden-based Chronicles of Riddick developer sees revenues climb to $4.69M during July-December period.

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Starbreeze Studios has been relatively quiet since 2007's well-received release of The Darkness for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. However, the Swedish studio is gearing up for a busy 2009, thanks to the April launch of the Atari-published Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena. The game maker is also at work on two titles for Electronic Arts, one operating under the codename Project RedLime and the other based on Robert Ludlum's Jason Bourne novels.

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Even without a major game release, Starbreeze is successfully managing its finances. In reporting its first-half financial results this week, the independent developer said revenues rose to 41 million Swedish Kroner (SEK) ($4.69 million), up from SEK27.5 million ($3.14 million) for the same July-December period in 2007. Profits for the period saw a similarly noteworthy climbing, rising to SEK7.2 million ($824,000) from SEK3.1 million ($355,000) a year ago.

"Our recently completed second quarter of 2008/2009 was very strong," commented Starbreeze CEO Johan Kristiansson in a statement." Kristiansson also expressed optimism over the future prospects of Assault on Dark Athena, saying, "So far we are satisfied with the advance publicity this work has given. The next important step is now that Atari will be able to convince the world's great game store chains to place large orders to the release date."

Kristiansson was also keen on calling out his studio's partnership with EA. "It feels like a very good rating for our work that EA, the world's leading game publisher, wants to start another project of this dignity with Starbreeze." In anticipation of those titles' releases, Starbreeze also noted in its financial report that it has increased headcount during the six-month period from 86 to 93.

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