NPD: $3.3 billion spent outside of new boxed games across regions in Q4 2011

Still in its infancy of tracking and reporting games that aren't new and from a box, the NPD reported sales for the US and key European markets reached $3.33 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011 (Oct. - Dec.). The number covers "used games, game rentals, subscriptions, digital full-game downloads, social network games, downloadable content and mobile games." To be extra clear, that means "everything besides new physical copies of games sold in retail stores."

The breakdown of the overall $3.33 billion has the States with a $2.04 billion spend, and the UK, Germany, and France forking over a combined total of $1.29 billion. Despite troubles at retail, UK consumers still dropped $508 million in the region, while Germany and France saw sales of $461 million and $320 million (respectively).

NPD usually reports monthly, strictly on US game sales. "Now that we've established our Europe based service covering the UK, France, and Germany, we can begin working directly with clients to help them dissect at deeper levels how the unique market drivers specific to each country can help them understand the increasingly global nature of the games industry," said NPD Euro analyst Sam Naji.

It's still hard to contextualize the data since the (publicly shared) tracking of digital spend is still so new. We do know that in 2011 the total spend in the States was around $16.6 billion, with new boxed games at retail reaching $9.3 billion.

[Image credit: Digital Storm via Shutterstock]
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The NPD Group Announces Fourth Quarter Consumer Spending on Video Game Content Outside of New Physical Retail Sales in U.S. and Key European Markets

PORT WASHINGTON, NEW YORK / LONDON, March 22, 2012 – Leading market research company, The NPD Group, today announced the fourth quarter 2011 (Oct.-Dec.) consumer spend on gaming content across the United States and Europe's largest video game markets (UK, France and Germany) via all monetization methods outside of new physical retail sales. Those sales, which include used games, game rentals, subscriptions, digital full-game downloads, social network games, downloadable content, and mobile games, reached a combined total of $3.33 billion (U.S. dollars).

At $2.04 billion, the United States captured the lion's share of fourth quarter sales, with UK, Germany and France generating a combined total of $1.29 billion (956MM Euros). Looking at sales by country, the UK generated close to $508 million, followed by Germany and France at $461 million and $320 million, respectively.

This information sources from NPD's expanding portfolio of global tracking research available through its Games Market Dynamics services, and addresses the demand for broader global insights and market comparisons using consistent measures and definitions across different geographies.

Utilizing its existing pan-European market research capabilities and established methodology, the market estimates can be harmonized with The NPD Group's U.S. tracking services, for insights into and across influential global markets.
"It's fascinating to see the nuances in consumer behavior across geographies," said Anita Frazier, industry analyst, The NPD Group. "Clearly these other forms of content acquisition do not follow as consistent of a trend as we see with the established box product business in the U.S."

"Now that we've established our Europe based service covering the UK, France, and Germany, we can begin working directly with clients to help them dissect at deeper levels how the unique market drivers specific to each country can help them understand the increasingly global nature of the games industry," said Sam Naji, European industry analyst, The NPD Group.

About The NPD Group, Inc.
The NPD Group is the leading provider of reliable and comprehensive consumer and retail information for a wide range of industries. Today, more than 2,000 manufacturers, retailers, and service companies rely on NPD to help them drive critical business decisions at the global, national, and local market levels. NPD helps our clients to identify new business opportunities and guide product development, marketing, sales, merchandising, and other functions. Information is available for the following industry sectors: automotive, beauty, entertainment, fashion, food, home and office, sports, technology, toys, video games, and wireless. For more information, contact us, visit http://www.npd.com/, or follow us Twitter at https://twitter.com/npdgroup.
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This article was originally published on Joystiq.