THQ sales up a third

Company of Heroes publisher announces record earnings for its third financial quarter; credits top franchises with boosting sales.

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With its stock options investigation firmly behind it, THQ looks set to reach its predicted billion in net sales for the financial year ending March 31. The Saints Row publisher's third-quarter earnings--the three-month period ended December 31, 2006--were up 33 percent over the same period last year, at $475.7 million compared to $357.8 million in 2005. Sales increased by 30 percent to $854.8 million from $658.5 million, giving THQ a reported net income of $61.5 million.

The company cites its record sales and earnings as due to strong performances by titles such as WWE SmackDown! vs. RAW 2007, Cars, Avatar, SpongeBob SquarePants, and Destroy All Humans! 2.

The most revenue came from PlayStation 2 titles, which accounted for 38 percent, followed by the Xbox 360 with 12.5 percent and the Nintendo DS at 11.2 percent. PC sales were also up for the company in both the US and the UK--7.6 percent in the US, and 7.9 percent in the UK. THQ was the number three independent publisher stateside by market share, and number two in the United Kingdom according to UK Chart-Track.

THQ president and CEO Brian Farrell commented, "Our success was driven by our Disney/Pixar, WWE, and Nickelodeon franchises, as well as outstanding results for our two newest owned intellectual properties, Saints Row and Company of Heroes."

The company also announced this week that popular modern action-adventure Saints Row will be coming to the PlayStation 3 this "spring." Other 2007 releases include sci-fi action game S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl in March, RTS Supreme Commander in February, and Titan Quest expansion pack Immortal Throne in March.

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