Ubisoft Digital Sales Up Over 90 Percent In Better Than Expected Quarter

by Mike Futter on Oct 30, 2014 at 07:03 AM

Despite a dip in sales for its second quarter, Ubisoft’s current fiscal year is on track to meet projections. The company reports half-year sales are 67.9 percent higher (compensated for exchange rates) than last year at this time.

Ubisoft’s fiscal year got off to a strong start thanks to Watch Dogs. The company surpassed its performance in the first quarter, with over 8 million copies of Watch Dogs shipped to retail. That number now exceeds 9 million.

Sales at the half-year mark are €484.2 million ($616.3 million), compared to €293.3 million ($373.32 million) in FY14. Sales in the second quarter total only €124.1 million ($158 million) versus performance last year of €217.7 million ($277.1 million). 

The publisher anticipated that the second quarter would be weaker, largely due to a gap in the release schedule. However, the company is looking toward a strong holiday period with Assassin’s Creed Unity, Assassin’s Creed Rogue, Far Cry 4, Just Dance 2015, and The Crew. 

Ubisoft joins EA and Take-Two in sharing good news about digital sales. Ubisoft says that it saw an increase of 90.4 percent, with that segment representing 27.8 percent of total sales at €134.7 million ($171.45 million). The publisher specifically identifies Assassin’s Creed Black Flag, South Park: The Stick of Truth, Far Cry 3, and Rayman Legends as major drivers of back catalog sales.

In its console breakdown, Ubisoft reflects the growing uptake of new-gen hardware. PlayStation 4 and Xbox One represent a combined 30 percent of software sales in the quarter and 47 percent when looking at the first half-year. Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 software represent 35 percent for the quarter, but only 31 percent when looking at the year to-date. 

PlayStation 4 SKUs are outselling Xbox One versions by over two-to-one. PC software sales represent 15 percent for the half-year. Wii U represents less than 1 percent for the six months.

[Source: Ubisoft]


Our Take
Trends are emerging now that three publishers have reported for the half-year. Digital continues to be a huge driver for sales, growing each quarter. New-gen update continues to move a rapid clip, and software sales are continuing to trend toward the new hardware.