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Square Enix says console and mobile games are doing well

Square Enix says console and mobile games are doing well

February 7, 2017 | By Alex Wawro

This week Square Enix reported its earnings for the nine months ending December 31, 2016, revealing an increase in both profits and sales. 

Overall, net sales rose by 24.4 percent year-over-year to 190.08 billion yen ($1.69 billion), while profits jumped up by 26 percent to 17.05 billion yen ($152.3 million) during the same period.

More notable for game devs is how, exactly, the earnings broke down in Square Enix's Digital Entertainment division, which encompasses its console, mobile and massively-multiplayer online game businesses.

Much like the company as a whole, Square Enix's MMO game biz (think: Final Fantasy XI and XIV) saw a dip in operating income year-over-year, which it chalks up to "the absence of expansion disk releases" during the April - December 2016 timeframe.  

However, in the area of console and mobile games, the division actually saw an uptick in both revenues and operating income -- due in large part to console games like Final Fantasy XV (pictured) and Rise of the Tomb Raider, and the ongoing strong performances of extant mobile games like Final Fantasy Brave Exvius.

Of course, we already heard that Final Fantasy XV was the fastest-selling game in the franchise's history, shipping 6 million units just over a month after it launched late last November.

All told, Square Enix reports that revenues in its Digital Entertainment division for the last nine months of 2016 rose 32.7 percent year-over-year to hit 146.22 billion yen ($1.3 billion), while operating income fell 5.8 percent to 21.79 billion yen ($194.7 million).

Also of note is a brief message for investors that Square Enix published near the end of its earnings breakdown, which aims to (in part) explain why the company is forecasting its revenue and profits for the current fiscal year as a range of figures rather than a specific target.

"The business environment surrounding [Square Enix] is in the midst of major changes, where consumer needs for content suitable to smart devices such as smartphones and tablet PCs are rapidly expanding, while the console game markets in North America and Europe are increasingly getting competitive and oligopolistic," reads the message. 

"[Square Enix] is focusing all efforts to achieve growth coupled with profits on a solid revenue foundation through introduction of flexible content development conforming to the ever-changing environment as well as diversification of profit opportunities."

As such, the company forecasts it will see a 16.8 to 26.1 percent increase in revenue this fiscal year (ending March 31st) and a 139.39 percent to 172.19 percent rise in profits.

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