Tag Archive | "video-game"

TTWO FYQ4 Beats; ‘Nukem,’ ‘Spec-Ops’ Pushed Out

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Shares of video game maker Take-Two Interactive (TTWO) are up 3 cents at $16.13 down 35 cents, or 2%, at $15.75, after the stock was briefly halted in advance of its fiscal Q4 report, which easily beat estimates.

The outlook for this quarter and the year, however, fell short of expectations. The company’s conference call with analysts started at 4:30 pm, Eastern.

Q4 revenue was down 22%, year over year, at $182.2 million, beating the average $148 million estimate. A net loss of 18 cents per share was far bettern than the 39-cent loss analysts had been expecting.

Results were boosted by titles such as NBA 2K11, Top Spin 4, and Major League Baseball 2K11, the company said.

For the current quarter, the company projected revenue of $325 million to $375 million, and profit of breakeven to 10 cents per share. Analysts had been modeling $298.7 million and 14 cents per share.

Reviewing the company’s lineup, some titles have slipped in their release schedule as described back in February. For example, Duke Nukem Forever, originally scheduled for May 3rd, was pushed out (of course!) to June 10th, while Spec Ops: The Line, originally scheduled for “fiscal year 2012,” was pushed out to “first half fiscal 2013.”

For the full year ending in March of 2012, the company projects $1 billion to $1.1 billion in revenue, and EPS of 10 cents to 35 cents. That is below the $1.3 billion and $1.12 per share analysts have been modeling.

Take-Two said three key members of its Rockstart Games development team, Sam Houser, Dan Houser, and Leslie Benzies, had renewed their long-term employment agreements with Take-Two.

Article courtesy of Tech Trader Daily

TTWO FYQ4 Beats; ‘Nukem,’ ‘Spec-Ops’ Pushed Out

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Shares of video game maker Take-Two Interactive (TTWO) are up 3 cents at $16.13 down 35 cents, or 2%, at $15.75, after the stock was briefly halted in advance of its fiscal Q4 report, which easily beat estimates.

The outlook for this quarter and the year, however, fell short of expectations. The company’s conference call with analysts started at 4:30 pm, Eastern.

Q4 revenue was down 22%, year over year, at $182.2 million, beating the average $148 million estimate. A net loss of 18 cents per share was far bettern than the 39-cent loss analysts had been expecting.

Results were boosted by titles such as NBA 2K11, Top Spin 4, and Major League Baseball 2K11, the company said.

For the current quarter, the company projected revenue of $325 million to $375 million, and profit of breakeven to 10 cents per share. Analysts had been modeling $298.7 million and 14 cents per share.

Reviewing the company’s lineup, some titles have slipped in their release schedule as described back in February. For example, Duke Nukem Forever, originally scheduled for May 3rd, was pushed out (of course!) to June 10th, while Spec Ops: The Line, originally scheduled for “fiscal year 2012,” was pushed out to “first half fiscal 2013.”

For the full year ending in March of 2012, the company projects $1 billion to $1.1 billion in revenue, and EPS of 10 cents to 35 cents. That is below the $1.3 billion and $1.12 per share analysts have been modeling.

Take-Two said three key members of its Rockstart Games development team, Sam Houser, Dan Houser, and Leslie Benzies, had renewed their long-term employment agreements with Take-Two.

Article courtesy of Tech Trader Daily

Sony: Macqaurie Sees Sell-Off Overdone

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Following a revision in Sony’s (SNE) fully-year results this morning and drop in the stock, Macquarie Equities Research analyst Jeff Loff this afternoon writes that the stock has “overcompensated” for the disappointment, and that there’s 5% upside in the shares.

However, he maintains a Neutral rating on the shares, writing that he’s waiting for a cut in Street estimates for the current fiscal year ending next March, and looking to gain greater confidence in how the company may do in 2013.

Loff notes a 23% decline in Sony’s stock since the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, and a loss of $8.1 billion in market capitalization, the stock has an “undemanding” valuation of 2.8 times projected 2013 Ebitda, and trades at just 0.7 times book value, again using 2013 estimates.

Loff thinks the total cost to Sony of the break-in to its online entertainment systems will probably be about 117 billion yen, using as a model for his estimate the 2006 break-in suffered by TJ Max (TJX). Of that, 75 billion yen is expected to be the amount for lost video game revenue due to the system outage sparked by the break-in.

Sony may end up taking a charge for the break-in costs in the June quarter, he thinks.

Loff cut his 2012 revenue and operating profit estimates to 7 trillion yen and 204 billion yen, from a prior 7.1 trillion and 237 billion, based on an expectation of 10% lower video game hardware and software sales than he previously estimated, though that might be too conservative, he concedes.

Sony shares today are down 32 cents, or 1%, at $26.73, having recouped much of its losses today.

Article courtesy of Tech Trader Daily

Carl Icahn Likens Judge Saying He Owes Bill Ackman $8 Million To Being Wrongfully Accused Of Murder, Sent To Death Row

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Five weeks ago, Carl Icahn announced he’d be closing the hedge fund he opened in 2004. Was this a sign retirement was next to come, some wondered? Hell no, Icahn recently told a reporter who checked in with the activist investor. “What else would I do? Play shuffleboard somewhere?” Mr. Icahn said from his vacation home in Florida. Carl’s got no time for anything so patently ridiculous, and is in fact busier than ever. What’s he been up to?

* The usual, mostly.

Mr. Icahn has been particularly active in recent years. Since 2004, he has begun 91 activist campaigns involving 79 American companies, according to FactSet SharkRepellent, a firm that tracks corporate takeover defenses and investor activism…Often, all Mr. Icahn has to do is make his interest known to send a stock price rising. Last November, for instance, regulatory filings showed that he had taken stakes in the toy maker Mattel and the building products company Masco. Mattel’s shares jumped to a 52-week high. Masco’s are up about 17 percent since he bought the stake.

* As well as focusing his efforts on beating his son at chess.

Brett Icahn today sits on the boards of several companies in which his father has invested, including the video game maker Take-Two Interactive, American Railcar Industries and the food company Hain Celestial Group. He also runs a hedge fund that returned 50 percent last year…The two often play chess, wagering thousands of dollars a game. Brett plays better. “I can’t figure out how he does it,” his father says, adding that a chess pro was coming over to coach him later that day. “Don’t tell Brett. I don’t want him to know.”

* Calling people on their bull shit.

Mr. Icahn has made more than a few enemies and frenemies in his time. He tangled with Donald Trump last year over three casinos in Atlantic City, a battle of big money and bigger egos. Mr. Icahn eventually lost in court…Mr. Icahn says he likes Mr. Trump — no hard feelings. Then he adds, “I don’t even think he invited me to his daughter’s wedding — so how close can we be?”

* And fighting Bill Ackman to the death.

For the last seven years, Mr. Ackman has contended that Mr. Icahn owes him more than $8 million stemming from an investment in a Dallas real estate company, Hallwood Realty. The New York Supreme Court ruled in favor of Mr. Ackman in August 2005, as did an appellate court in October 2006. A final appeal is pending. But Mr. Icahn vows he will go all the way to the United States Supreme Court. “How many times have judges been wrong? How many people have gone to the death chamber because they’re wrong?” he asked. “Ackman is dead wrong.” Mr. Ackman says he is confident he will prevail. In the meantime, Mr. Icahn must pay him hefty interest while the payment is delayed. “It grows at about 9 percent a year,” Mr. Ackman said.

The Raider In Winter: Carl Icahn at 75 [NYT]



Article courtesy of Dealbreaker

Nintendo, Sony See Strong Sales

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Though video game sales were soft in March, Nintendo and Sony (SNE) posted strong gains, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Nintendo said U.S. sales of its 3DS reached nearly 400,000 in its  first week on the market, slightly below the original Nintendo DS’s debut, which came during the Thanksgiving holiday week.

In addition, Sony said it sold more than 8 million of its Move controllers for the third-generation PlayStation, which went on sale last fall. The company said sales  were seeing “strong momentum.”

By contrast, sales of new video game hardware, software and accessories in the U.S. fell to $1.53 billion, down 4% year-over-year, according to market researcher NPD Group.

Video games face strong competition, given that consumers now have cheaper gaming options on smartphones, tablets, and online.

Article courtesy of Tech Trader Daily

RIM Says PlayBook Runs Android Apps

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Research in Motion (RIMM) this afternoon announced its “PlayBook” tablet computer, which will go on sale April 19th, will run apps written not only natively for its “QNX” operating system, but also programs written for Google’s (GOOG) “Android” operating system, as well as program’s written in the Java programming language.

The Android and Java programs will be supported on the PlayBook via two “app players” provided as an option to PlayBook users. Users can then download Java and Android apps from RIM’s BlackBerry App World online store, the company said.

RIM said as well that games developers Ideaworks Labs and Unity Technologies will bring video game titles to the PlayBook.

RIM is branding QNX as the “BlackBerry Tablet OS,” and said that it will “shortly release the native SDK for the BlackBerry PlayBook enabling C/C++ application development” for the operating system.

RIM shares are down $7.41, or almost 12%, at $56.68 after the company offered a disappointing Q1 forecast this afternoon.

Article courtesy of Tech Trader Daily

Shanda Q4 Beats, Helped By Online Video Unit

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Chinese video game and online content developer Shanda Interactive Entertainment Online (SNDA) this evening reported Q4 revenue of $232 million, beating the consensus $217.1 million, and earnings per share of 46 cents, ahead of the average 39-cent estimate.

Revenue in the three months ending in December was up 2%, year over year, driven by a 14% decline in revenue at the company’s Shanda Games (GAME) unit, disclosed earlier this evening, and a 9% decline in Shanda’s online revenue. Both divisions saw a 5% rise in revenue from the prior quarter, however.

“Other” revenue of $61 million more than doubled, year over year, the company said, driven in large part by the inclusion of the “Ku6” online video site that was bought in January of last year by the “Hurray!” segment of Shanda. Ku6 runs so-called value-added services delivered to cell phones. Ku6 competes with, among others, Youku.com (YOKU), which reported results last night.

Shanda CEO Tianqiao Chen said that 2010 had been a year of transformation and remarked, “We are pleased with the Company’s continued progress and believe that this critical period of transformation that we are currently in is laying a solid foundation to drive sustainable growth over the long term.”

The company will host a conference call with management this evening at 9:30 am, Eastern.

Shanda Interactive shares traded down 9 cents to $42.01 in late trading before the results were announced.

Article courtesy of Tech Trader Daily

THQ Drops 13%: FYQ4, Year View Well Shy Of Estimates

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Shares of video game maker THQ (THQI) are down 81 cents, almost 13%, at $5.60 after the company reported fiscal Q4 EPS ahead of expectations but forecast the current quarter and the year below estimates.
Q3 revenue was down 12% at $314.6 million, missing the average $317.2 million estimate. EPS of [...]

Article courtesy of BARRONS.com: Tech Trader Daily

Dell salvages its 3Par fiasco, picks up cloud storage provider Compellent for $820M

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Dell has picked up cloud storage provider Compellent for $820 million after losing out on its bid for storage provider 3Par a few months ago to Hewlett-Packard.

Compellent, like 3Par, is a provider of technology and software for cloud-based storage. It allows users to store data on both public and private cloud servers more efficiently and cut some management costs.

It’s an increasingly important set of technology as many companies move to have their employees use virtualized versions of software that are run on remote servers. That brings hardware costs down by letting companies just purchase high-powered servers — or computing power from public cloud providers like Amazon — instead of multiple individual computers.

Not to be outdone by HP, Dell took what it could as a consolation prize after 3Par sparked a massive bidding war between the two companies. Dell was willing to offer up to $2 billion for the storage provider, and HP countered with a successful $2.4 billion offer. The very public bidding war is another indicator of how important this kind of technology has become.

Most of Dell’s business is in providing companies with private cloud servers. It sells large servers that are run and maintained in-house and are directly connected to networked computers rather than using the Internet. Usually private cloud servers are faster, and a lot of people argue that they are more secure than public cloud services. Dell has already said that it doesn’t expect public cloud services to overtake private cloud usage for those exact reasons.

But with private cloud servers, each company has to bear the costs of keeping those servers up and running. That isn’t the case with public cloud servers, where companies like Amazon and Rackspace are responsible for keeping them running. So adding ways to reduce the IT headaches that private cloud servers bring seems to be another way Dell is hoping to keep the private cloud popular.

Dell’s server business is already booming. If you split Dell’s Data Center Solutions off from the main company, it would count as the third-largest distributor of x86 architecture servers, or those with chips from Intel and AMD. Dell’s top 20 customers — including Microsoft and cloud video game company OnLive — regularly purchase tens of thousands of server nodes from the company.

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Article courtesy of VentureBeat » deals

Dell: The public cloud doesn’t scare us!

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Dell makes a good chunk of change off selling servers. The Texas-based company raked in $1.8 billion off server sales in the last quarter alone — which was up 20 percent from $1.5 billion the same quarter a year earlier.

But with the emergence of companies like Rackspace and Amazon’s EC2 cloud services, there’s a diminishing need for companies to purchase servers to perform all the data crunching they need. They can offload it to public cloud servers that have the computing firepower to handle it.

Dell’s response to the public cloud? It isn’t going to affect their server sales at all, said Roy Guillen, general manager of Dell’s Data Center Solutions.

Most businesses — whether they are large or small — are still going to elect to purchase Dell servers and keep them in-house because they will be able to access the data more quickly. There are also a number of security concerns when shipping data off to cloud servers that many companies have, Guillen said. Some IT firms simply can’t meet security compliance requirements that companies have, so the public cloud isn’t an option.

Those security concerns are mostly a myth, said Jason Hoffman, founder and chief technology officer of cloud computing provider Joyent. His company purchases servers from Dell, and the public cloud infrastructure they offer is immune to security threats like rootkits. But most major companies will probably still always have security standards that will prevent them from moving their business into the public cloud.

Dell’s server business is already booming. If you split Dell’s Data Center Solutions off from the main company, it would count for the third-largest distributor of x86 architecture servers, or those with chips from Intel and AMD. Dell’s top 20 customers — including Microsoft and cloud video game company OnLive — regularly purchase tens of thousands of server nodes from the company.

But cloud computing is growing just about as quickly as everything else, and is a lot more cost efficient for many businesses. Amazon recently began offering graphics processing as part of their cloud computing products. The limits of cloud computing when compared to in-house data servers are starting to quickly disappearing. And as the public cloud options for developers continue to grow, it seems like the public cloud could be more of a threat than Dell realizes.

For now, at least, their strategy is pretty clear — see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil.

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Article courtesy of VentureBeat » deals