Janco Partners' analyst Mike Hickey, after gazing deep into his crystal ball, reports
many bad things in THQ's present and future. The biggest issue, Hickey believes, is the publisher's reliance on the recently delayed Saints Row 2
. He surmises there is general internal conflict at the publisher, between corporate trying to salvage the company's finances,
and developers trying to deliver a quality product. Hickey states THQ
's guidance for this fiscal year is too aggressive and dependent on what THQ is calling "proven franchises," but he believes these titles are at risk due to delays, low demand and major marketplace competition.
Hickey spends some time comparing Saints Row
to Activision's True Crime
. He says that Activision once called True Crime
a franchise (before it killed it) the same way THQ is touting Saints Row
, but he believes a "franchise" has a "predictable level of consumer demand," which Saints Row
just doesn't have. However, he believes it'll be THQ's best-performing owned IP this year. Hickey tells investors to just look back at THQs owned IPs for the last couple years
and make their own conclusions about how things are going to go down this fiscal year.