[Howrse]Just Dance propels Ubisoft to $852M Q3 revenues

10-12 02:41

  More than 13 million copies shipped for Just Dance 3 and other dancing games last quarter (ending December) helped Ubisoft meet its third quarter guidance and grow its revenue to 652 million ($852 million).

  That revenue is significantly higher than the 580-620 million ($757-$810 million) the Parisian publisher originally forecasted in November, but it’s in line with its revised estimate of 650 million ($849 million) Ubisoft announced several weeks ago due to strong holiday sales.

  The company credits its flagship casual franchise Just Dance for helping it reach those numbers. Ubisoft’s dance game category increased in sales for the quarter by nearly 30 percent — driven by the release of Just Dance 3, which has already sold over 7 million units worldwide.

  Ubisoft says it made up almost 70 percent of the worldwide marketshare for dancing games, and is expanding its popularity in Europe and Asia. As of January, the Just Dance line had already managed to sell a total of more than 25 million copies globally.

  It also points to solid sales for Assassin’s Creed: Revelations, which slightly exceeded its forecast and shipped more than 7 million units to distributors. The publisher says it increased market share in the console games to 8.6 percent last year, compared to 8.1 percent in 2010.

  The company notes that sales from its digitally distributed and online games increased by 159 percent in the third quarter, too. The Settlers Online and horse-breeding game Howrse, both free-to-play, browser-based titles, performed particularly well.

  Those factors helped increase Ubisoft’s Q3 revenues by 8.8 percent year-over-year (or 11 percent at constant exchange rates) to 652 million. Its sales for the first nine months of the fiscal year also jumped by 4.5 percent (9.2 percent at constant exchange rates) to 900 million ($1.18 billion).

  Ubisoft expects sales for the fourth quarter (ending March) to reach 150-180 million ($196-235 million), which it says reflects fewer game releases compared to the same period last year, and what it calls “a relatively soft start of the quarter.”

  For the full fiscal year, predicts that its sales will reach 1.05-1.08 billion ($1.37-$1.41 billion), and that its operating income will reach 45-65 million ($59-85 million).

  ”In fiscal 2012-13, we will start to capitalize on the large-scale investments we have undertaken more than three years ago, with the ramp-up of our offering for core gamers and notably a strong comeback into the major segment of shooter games,” says Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot.

  ”We also expect to see sustained growth in our online and digital revenue during the year. In the longer term we have solid opportunities for continued growth and profitability thanks to the arrival of the new generation of consoles and our plans to extend to all our titles the benefits and economic models of online games.”