Ubi shows €78 million loss for first-half 2009

By Patrick Garratt, Monday, 30 November 2009 21:42 GMT

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Ubisoft’s confirmed a €78 million loss for the first half of the current fiscal year, ended September. The same period in 2008 saw a €33 million profit.

Revenue plummeted compared to last year, down to €166 million from €344.5 million in the previous corresponding period.

Ow.

“Ubisoft had a light first-half line-up, driving much weaker sales (down 52% vs. last year), with DS software piracy, lower catalog sales, and a continued weak retail environment all contributed to the decline,” said Wedbush Morgan’s Michael Pachter in a note.

Ubi boss Yves Guillemot pointed to brightness from Assassin’s Creed II in the current half of the year, but warned against optimism related to Ubi’s Wii games.

“First week sales of Assassin’s Creed II, up 32%, with positive initial indications for the second week, combined with an overwhelmingly warm reception from gamers, validates our strategy of developing bigger franchises,” he said.

“Based on this initial data, Assassin’s Creed 2 looks well positioned to outstrip targets while our Wii games have got off to a more contrasted start in a less predictable arket.

“Finally, sales of James Cameron’s Avatar: The Game should benefit from the launch of the movie which is expected to be the biggest blockbuster of this holiday season.”

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