Sales for the quarter were above expectations, hitting €360 million of an expected €310 million, and that's thanks in large part to Watch Dogs, Ubisoft says. In its first week at retail, Watch Dogs sales hit 4 million, making it Ubisoft's "best-selling game ever in week one." It also broke the publisher's day-one sales records.
"The success of Watch Dogs and the quality of our games portfolio presented at this year's E3 highlight our strategic positioning as well as our continuous drive for innovation, and affirm our long-term approach," Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot said in today's report. "Watch Dogs is now well-positioned as a major franchise and we will be able to replicate and build on its success in the coming years. Its sales performance testifies to Ubisoft's expertise as a creator of blockbuster brands."
Watch Dogs (Review)
Record first quarter sales of €360 million
Creation of a major new franchise – Watch Dogs®, with 8 million units
Targets for full-year 2014-15 confirmed
Syndicated loan extended
Paris, July 10, 2014 – Today, Ubisoft released its sales figures for the fiscal quarter ending on June 30, 2014.
Sales for the first quarter of fiscal-year 2014-15 came to €360 million, up 374 percent (or 386 percent at constant exchange rates) compared with the €76 million recorded for first-quarter fiscal-year 2013-14.
The first quarter sales figure was higher than the target of approximately €310 million announced when Ubisoft released its full-year 2013-14 results. This performance reflects:
The success of Watch Dogs, which broke Ubisoft's and industry's sales record for, respectively, the launch of a new game and of a new brand, with over 8 million sell-in units.
Strong growth reported in the digital segment, with sales up 149 percent to €84 million, driven by Watch Dogs, the success of Ubisoft's Free-to-Play mobile games and the releases of Trials FusionTM, Child of LightTM and Valiant Hearts The Great WarTM.
At E3 2014, media and gamers recognized the high quality of the games presented by Ubisoft as demonstrated by a record number of awards won and a 27 percent share of views on Youtube. Assassin's Creed Unity® and Far Cry® 4 took first and second place respectively in the Gamespot Trax E3 chart, which also recognized Ubisoft as top publisher.
Yves Guillemot, co-founder and chief executive officer, said, "The success of Watch Dogs and the quality of our games portfolio presented at this year's E3 highlight our strategic positioning as well as our continuous drive for innovation, and affirm our long-term approach. Watch Dogs is now well positioned as a major franchise and we will be able to replicate and build on its success in the coming years. Its sales performance testifies to Ubisoft's expertise as a creator of blockbuster brands. That expertise enables us to stand out from our competitors at the beginning of each console cycle and therefore to reach a new dimension. Additionally, Ubisoft created a strong impression at the last E3 with titles such as Assassin's Creed Unity, The Crew, The Division, Far Cry 4, Just Dance Now and Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege."
"Although the financial year has only just started, our confidence for fiscal-year 2014-15 has been reinforced by our first-quarter performance and the keen anticipation for our upcoming games."
Sales for the second quarter of 2014-15
Ubisoft expects second-quarter sales to amount to approximately €85 million, down by around 61 percent compared with the second quarter of 2013-14, which saw the releases of Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell® BlackList®, Rayman Legends® and Just Dance® 2014.
Ubisoft is standing by its previously-announced targets for full-year 2014-15, namely sales of at least €1,400 million and non-IFRS operating income of at least €150 million.
Extension of Ubisoft's syndicated loan
Ubisoft's syndicated loan has been increased from €215 million to €250 million and its term was extended from July 2017 to July 2019.
Market share: In the first five months of calendar 2014, Ubisoft was the second-largest independent publisher in the United States with 12.4% market share (compared with fourth-largest and 6.8% one year earlier). In the first six months of calendar 2014, Ubisoft was also the second-largest independent publisher in Europe with 15.7% market share (compared with third-largest and 8.8% one year earlier).