No Happy Holidays for 500+ Laid Off by EA

October 31, 2008 -

Citing losses and difficult economic news, game publishing giant Electronic Arts announced yesterday that it was laying off 6% of its work force.

That's more than 500 employees.

As reported by VentureBeat:

During the quarter, EA relied on the staple of its sports franchise, Madden NFL 09, which sold 4.5 million copies. Spore sold two million units. That’s a respectable amount, and the title is sure to sell steadily into the future to mass market audiences. But it’s not the mega-hit that some had hoped for. Another big title was Warhammer Online... EA sold 1.2 million copies...

[EA CEO John] Riccitiello said in a conference call that the postponement of the Harry Potter movie and its accompanying game was a big reason for the shortfall...

In an investor's note issued moments ago, Wedbush-Morgan analyst Michael Pachter was critical of EA management, while still recommending the publisher's stock as a strong buy:

EA management was somewhat aloof during [yesterday's] earnings call. With the stock hovering near a seven-year low, management continued its recent history of disappointment, and spent an inordinate amount of time sowing seeds of fear about the potential for a tepid holiday sales season. EA’s share price in after hours trading reflects that many investors have abandoned hope...

 

management has demonstrated an uncanny ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in the eyes of investors, and we think that these old habits will take a long time to die...

Seeking Alpha has a transcript of yesterday's conference call.

GP: We'd have to agree with Pachter. While John Riccitiello started strong when he returned to EA last year, in 2008 we've witnessed a series of embarrassments take place on his watch. From the lengthy, abortive attempt to seize Take-Two to the Spore DRM debacle and Ricitiello's subsequent insult to those who protested, it hasn't been pretty.

Regarding Spore, while it has done well at launch (thanks to the hype) the game is simply not going to be a Sims-like cash cow in the long run. It's not as well done as The Sims and lacks the feminine appeal which sustained The Sims over the long haul.


Comments

Re: No Happy Holidays for 500+ Laid Off by EA

You are quite correct. In fact I'll go further on your comment. Their families will be the happiest ones! Worked to the bone and wives and kids are just an afterthought to deadlines. The wives of EA employees started a site to bitch about EA!

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MaskedPixelanteOK, so my brief research looking at GameFAQs forums (protip, don't do that if you wish to keep your sanity intact.), the 3DS doesn't have the power to run anything more powerful than the NES/GBC/GG AND run the 3DS system in the background.07/28/2014 - 11:01am
ZenMatthew, the 3DS already has GBA games in the form of the ambassador tittles. And I an just as curious about them not releasing them on there like they did the NES ones. I do like them on the Wii U as well, but seems weird. And where are the N64 games?07/28/2014 - 10:40am
james_fudgeNo. They already cut the price. Unless they release a new version that has a higher price point.07/28/2014 - 10:19am
E. Zachary KnightMatthew, It most likely is. The question is whether Nintendo wants to do it.07/28/2014 - 10:12am
Matthew WilsonI am sure the 3ds im more then powerful enough to emulate a GBA game.07/28/2014 - 9:54am
Sleaker@IanC - while the processor is effectively the same or very similar, the issue is how they setup the peripheral hardware. It would probably require creating some kind of emulation for the 3DS to handle interfacing with the audio and input methods for GBA07/28/2014 - 9:30am
Sleaker@EZK - hmmm, that makes sense. I could have sworn I had played GB/GBC games on it too though (emud of course)07/28/2014 - 9:23am
E. Zachary KnightSleaker, the DS has a built in GBA chipset in the system. That is why it played GBA games. The GBA had a seperate chipset for GB and GBColor games. The DS did not have that GB/GBC chipset and that is why the DS could not play GB and GBC games.07/28/2014 - 7:25am
IanCI dont think Nintendo ever gave reason why GBA games a reason why GBA games aren't on the 3DS eshop. The 3DS uses chips that are backwards compatable with the GBA ob GBA processor, after all.07/28/2014 - 6:46am
Sleakerhmmm that's odd I could play GBA games natively in my original DS.07/28/2014 - 1:39am
Matthew Wilsonbasically "we do not want to put these games on a system more then 10 people own" just joking07/27/2014 - 8:13pm
MaskedPixelanteSomething, something, the 3DS can't properly emulate GBA games and it was a massive struggle to get the ambassador games running properly.07/27/2014 - 8:06pm
Andrew EisenIdeally, you'd be able to play such games on either platform but until that time, I think Nintendo's using the exclusivity in an attempt to further drive Wii U sales.07/27/2014 - 7:21pm
Matthew WilsonI am kind of surprised games like battle network are not out on the 3ds.07/27/2014 - 7:01pm
Andrew EisenWell, Mega Man 1 - 4, X and X2 are already on there and the first Battle Network is due out July 31st.07/27/2014 - 6:16pm
MaskedPixelanteDid Capcom ever give us a timeline for when they planned on putting the Megaman stuff on Wii U?07/27/2014 - 2:23pm
MaskedPixelanteIf by "distance themselves from Google Plus" you mean "forcing Google Plus integration in everything", then yes, they are distancing themselves from Google Plus.07/26/2014 - 12:20pm
MechaTama31I wish they would distance G+ from the Play Store, so I could leave reviews and comments again.07/26/2014 - 11:03am
Matthew Wilson@pm I doubt it. Google seems to be distancing themselves from G+07/25/2014 - 9:31pm
Papa MidnightGoogle+ Integration is coming to Twitch!07/25/2014 - 8:41pm
 

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