As we anxiously await the official industry numbers for November, provided by the NPD, we get Ubisoft's financial report for the first half of the fiscal year (ended September 30). Overall, the company posted an increase in sales despite suffering through significant operating losses.
Those losses for the six months hit $47 million, which actually was a 20% improvement over the $58.1 million they lost in the same period last year. Ubisoft cited declining sales, marketing, and general and administrative tasks as contributors to the losses.
But although the operating issues still exist, the company experienced a 13% rise in revenue for the half-year, enjoying a grand total of $228.8 million. They also reported an increase in expenses in regards to research and development; up from $71.4 million to $95 million this year.
The Xbox 360 release of Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Double Agent was the top-selling game in North America for the month of October, and ultimately generated a 113% growth in the market for Ubisoft. The company also mentioned Wii titles Rayman Raving Rabbids and Red Steel as solid performers; both games ranked in the top five best-selling launch titles, with Red Steel securing the #2 slot. Due to this early success, Ubisoft now plans to strengthen its support of Nintendo's next-gen console in 2007.
"The improvement in our results for the first half of the fiscal year reflects both a very good business performance and tight control of marketing expenditures," commented Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot. "The third quarter of 2006-07 is off to a good start, with Red Steel and Rayman in the top five sales on the launch of the Wii, and Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell and Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six returning to the front ranks."
Ubisoft will keep its targeted financial expectations for the fiscal year '07-'08, and they now predict an overall revenue growth of about 25%.