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EA Shoots For 40/60% Digital to Physical Revenue Split

Electronic ArtsSpeaking to an audience at the Credit Suisse 2010 Technology Conference yesterday, EA’s Chief Financial Officer Eric Brown noted the important role that PC and DLC plays in the publisher’s revenue.

“A principal growth driver has been downloads for extra content, which includes microtransactions for free to play games. This would include Playfish, map packs for 360 and PS3 games.”

Astonishingly, the FIFA Ultimate Team virtual collectable card game that has been placed in the last three iterations of the football franchise, has been a substantial provider.

“There’s really no limit to the card packs that you can purchase. We’ve seen people paying $500, 800, 1000 on digital trading cards so they can get the best possible line up of teams.
“This has driven net digital revenue of FIFA from $15 million for FIFA 09 to $31 million for FIFA 10. We don’t know where the number’s going to end up for FIFA 11, but we do know that we’ve sold more packaged goods units.”

The fact that DLC was responsible for adding an additional $15 million to the bottom line, in just one year, is a staggering statistic. Brown went on to add that Battlefield Bad Company 2 had generated around $30 million in digital sales, with full game downloads – primarily PC products – also contributing significantly.

Brown also highlighted that fact that currently, they are seeing an increased propensity for gamers to purchase titles online through digital distribution, especially for first person shooters like Battlefield Bad Company 2.

In just two years, EA revenues derived from digital have gone from $430 million to $750 million- with PC purchases as the major provider and consoles and mobile roughly equal.

Brown claimed that EA was determined to “more closely match the 40/60 per cent digital/packaged goods split that we see in the worldwide market today.”
“Overall we’re growing our digital business by more than 30 per cent per annum,” he revealed. “In the first half of fiscal 11 we grew our total digital revenue by 35 per cent year over year. We’re actually taking share in digital revenue over all.”

Despite EA taking a 74 drop in its share price over the last three years, clearly these statistic point to a digital-led future for EA, and for the gaming industry as a whole; where it’s not unrealistic that in the span of ten years we may see revenue splits that reverse to 60% digital 40% retail.

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Source via GamesIndustry.Biz

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