Electronic Arts double down on live services and core franchises
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In yesterday’s earnings release, Electronic Arts CEO Andrew Wilson stated that the company had an excellent second quarter which was driven by its core franchises and live services.
FIFA Ultimate Team, Madden Ultimate Team, The Sims 4, and Apex Legends all experienced growth during the quarter, which has driven EA’s decision to double down on such products.
EA COO and CFO, Blake Jorgensen said:
"The strong results this quarter illustrate the power of our live services and our core franchises. Strength in Ultimate Team, The Sims 4 and FIFA Online drove live services performance above our expectations."
"Looking ahead, we are doubling down on live services combined with our core franchises. We’re investing in games that people play for longer and engage with much more deeply. This focus will continue to drive growth and profitability for the company through the remainder of this year and beyond," he added.
FIFA Ultimate Team's unique player count has experienced a 22% year-over-year increase. Madden Ultimate Team’s player count has also gone up by 19%, and The Sims 4 has seen a monthly average player growth of 40% year-on-year. EA defines digital net bookings as "the net amount of products and services sold digitally," and it hit $3.883 billion over the past 12 months. That equals 8% growth in digital net bookings year-on-year and makes up 78% total net bookings (i.e. digital and physical combined).
Apex Legends has now achieved a player base of 70 million over its lifetime, which has earned it a place in EA’s plans to increase its focus on live services. The game makes its way to Steam along with other EA multiplayer games next year.
Beginning with Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order on November 15, EA games will all gradually return to Steam. Their games will move alongside EA Access, the company’s subscription service, becoming the first of its kind on Steam.
This union will only serve to increase the benefits of Steam over Epic Store and might push their competitor to secure some special new deal or promotion of its own.