Ubisoft today released its earnings report for the first quarter of the financial year, and publisher figures showed a significant decline from year to year.
During the three months ended June 30, Ubisoft reported revenue of 14% to € 353 million ($ 415 million), with net orders down 21% to € 326 million ($ 384 million).
While the booking was slightly above Ubisoft’s forecast, the publisher faced a difficult comparison with last year’s first quarter when the pandemic pushed sales to record highs despite a release slate with headlines from Stadia’s debut of Monopoly and new seasons for Rainbow Six: Siege and For the Glory .
The first quarter of the year had a more robust selection of releases, including Uno: 50th Anniversary and new updates for Assassin̵
Looking ahead, Ubisoft predicts net bookings in the second quarter of € 340 million ($ 400 million), which will be just over 1% lower than the year before. It reflects a release slate led by a different range of updates for its franchises, as well as the China-exclusive Switch game Rabbids Adventure Party and the launch of the Rocksmith + service on PC.
The publisher expects to make up for these declines in the second half of the year, and told investors that single-digit growth in net orders is expected for the full year.
In a post-earnings conversation, Guillemot emphasized the publisher’s strategy to expand its traditional AAA premium content business, while releasing free-to-play listings of its brands to expand its overall audience.
Guillemot said the publisher is investing 80% of its future content investment in premium content titles, while the remaining 20% is focusing on expanding its free-to-play album.