Sega Projects Net Loss As Sonic Boom Skids With Under 500,000 Copies Sold

by Mike Futter on Feb 12, 2015 at 02:38 AM

With recent layoffs and the announcement of abandoning its long-time North American headquarters in San Francisco, we knew that Sega wasn’t have its best year. Today’s earnings release puts a fine point on that, as the company now projects a year-end loss following a down holiday quarter.

Sega announced net sales for the quarter of ¥113.27 billion ($945.78 million), down from ¥141.75 billion ($1.18 billion) during the same quarter last year. Profits for the holiday quarter, typically a strong one, are down over 93 percent from ¥32.98 billion ($275.4 million) last year to ¥2.06 billion (17.16 million) in the most recently completed quarter.

While Alien: Isolation performed well across five platforms with 1.76 million copies shipped, Sega’s partnership with Nintendo didn’t bear much fruit. The two Sonic Boom titles shipped a combined 490,000 copies. Neither reviewed particularly well.

The company announced a significant revision to its year-end forecast that covers the financial statements in red ink. Sales expectations have been lowered and profit expectations dropped from a gain of ¥4 billion ($33.4 million) to a loss of ¥13 billion ($108.5 million).

[Source: Sega (1), (2), (3)]


Our Take
While Sonic fans clamor for a return to form for the blue blur, Sega keeps failing to deliver. The latest move, giving the franchise to western studios, had a lot of promise. Unfortunately, the effort tripped and fell.

Sega made the most of its Alien license, redeeming it after the abysmal Colonial Marines. We still have yet to hear official confirmation about the Total War: Warhammer project mentioned in The Art of Total War, and I suspect that would generate some buzz for the publisher.

Here’s hoping that E3 brings big things for Sega (and maybe even Phantasy Star Online 2 for Western audiences). The publisher certainly needs more wins (like Persona 5, which is due out this year).