Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Gameloft 2009 Revenues: Merci Beaucoup iPhone!

The world's 2nd largest mobile games publisher, Paris-based Gameloft (GFT), released preliminary FY & Q4 2009 earnings today. Here are the highlights:
  • FY 2009 revenues were up 11% to $170mil... pure mobile games growth was 12%
  • Q4 2009 revenues were down 6% to $44mil, which the company attributes to their "withdrawal from boxed games in January 2009 and to the drop in the dollar. On a like for like basis, sales in the last quarter of 2009 were up 7%." Hmm... for sure this messes with my mobile publisher poll.
  • iPhone revenues for FY 2009 were $24.5mil or 14.4% of overall revenues. Interestingly this lines up pretty well with my ratings-based estimate on Jan 6th derived from the disclosure that they had sold 10mil games through the App Store since launch. At that time I estimated the total revenue generated by their games was about $38mil, which after Apple's share (30%) is almost $27mil in 18mos.
  • iPhone revenues in Q4 2009 were $9.75mil or 40% of total 2009 iPhone sales. That means iPhone sales accounted for 22% of Gameloft's worldwide mobile games sales in Q4
  • 39% of revenues came from Europe, 32% from North America, 29% rest of world
Gameloft is clearly an iPhone superstar, and as they've been fond of pointing out recently, they're very well positioned to leverage that success on to the iPad. Good stuff and overall I'd characterize their 2009 results as pretty solid (pending a look at all the numbers in March). However, I do have ecosystem concerns now that they've basically confirmed what we all suspected... that Apple is the dominant retail channel in mobile games space and the operator portal business is becoming less & less relevant. I think this is ultimately a dangerous thing for publishers (ask the music guys) and they should all be encouraging Android, Ovi and BlackBerry to get their butts in gear, so that they can provide some viable competition.
Revenues last 16 quarters in millions.


  1. some investors seems to know that the revenue for gamelofts q1 will be still ok but than very flat for some time (my bet 130mil). iPhone cannot compensate the drop in revenues on the operator business in the future. the cost for production at gameloft are still extreme high so the next story will be reducing cost without reducing the amount of new produced and released titles. gaining more market share will be very hard on operator and app store. with ubisoft ramping up their own iphone business it sounds that they will have soon some hard times. Perhaps Gameloft will license even more other publishers to compensate and strengthen against EAs publishing.

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