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EA's Riccitiello: Transition 'Much Harder' Due To Lack Of Wii Focus

EA's Riccitiello: Transition 'Much Harder' Due To Lack Of Wii Focus

July 27, 2007 | By Simon Carless

July 27, 2007 | By Simon Carless
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In today's Electronic Arts investor call as part of its annual shareholder meeting, CEO John Riccitiello has been discussing the company's next-gen transition, suggesting it's been "a lot harder" than expected because of a lack of focus on the Wii, and singling out Ubisoft for its better work in targeting Nintendo's platforms.

In a Q&A during the call querying why Electronic Arts' stock price has not really moved up in accordance with the general NASDAQ movement of the past couple of years, Riccitiello commented: "The [hardware] transition has been a lot harder" than EA expected.

He commented in particular: "Unfortunately we backed a little bit on the wrong horse in focusing so much on PS3 and Xbox 360, and [by focusing] to a lesser degree on the Wii."

However, the EA CEO went on to say: "Let me assure you that almost all of us in the industry made the same judgment - after so many transitions guessing exactly right, we got this one a little bit wrong, and we're dealing with it now with strong investments on the Wii."

Later in the call, when asked by another investor what companies he is concerned by in the market, Riccitiello singled out French-headquartered publisher Ubisoft for its "...quicker and more forceful move against Wii and Nintendo DS", noting that "that's showing in their [financial] results."

Elsewhere in the same call, EA's Frank Gibeau apparently confirmed a Godfather game sequel while discussing the company's portfolio for older game players.


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